New Jersey Attorney for Motorcyclists Hit by Trucks
There is no greater discrepancy on New Jersey roads and highways than the difference in size between motorcycles and large commercial trucks. Motorcyclists ride exposed to the wind and elements, close to the road. Truck drivers are encased in their massive vehicles, sometimes traveling for days. When a motorcycle is hit by a truck, the results are often catastrophic or deadly. Injured motorcyclists and their families need an experienced motorcycle injury attorney like Jerry Friedman, Esq. fighting for their rights.
Our New Jersey attorney for motorcyclists hit by trucks is not only a skilled personal injury lawyer, but he is also an avid rider. Whenever a motorcycle is involved in an accident with another vehicle, the rider is likely to suffer severe injuries requiring extensive and costly medical treatment. When the other vehicle is a truck, the cost and pain could be exponentially worse. If you or a loved one was hurt in a motorcycle crash, call 1-800-LAW-4-HOGS (1-800-529-4464) to schedule a free appointment.
Common Causes of Truck and Motorcycle Accidents in New Jersey
Driving a truck and riding a motorcycle could not be more different. Many of these inherent differences are the reasons accidents occur. Motorcycles have one of the smallest profiles on the road and they are often lost among the other traffic.
One of the leading causes of motor vehicle accidents in New Jersey is distracted driving. When a truck driver takes their focus off the road to answer a text, make a phone call, eat a sandwich, or check their GPS, they put every other motorist around them in jeopardy. Motorcyclists are especially disadvantaged because a distracted truck driver could easily miss a much smaller bike when changing lanes or making a turn. To make matters worse, trucks have large blind spots along the side, in front, and in the rear where a motorcyclist could travel unseen. Given the mass of some commercial 18-wheelers, a truck could strike a motorcycle and the driver could be completely unaware of the collision.
Because of their size, trucks present an additional risk to anyone on the road traveling in a smaller vehicle. A motorcyclist is particularly vulnerable because of the lack of protection provided by the bike. If a truck cannot stop in time and hits a car from behind, it could result in merely structural damage to the car. However, this is not the case if a truck rear-ends a motorcycle. Even if the truck is close to stopping and only moving at a slow speed, the resulting damage and injuries could be devastating. Therefore, any reckless driving or excessive speeding increases the risk to motorcyclists. As an experienced rider, our New Jersey motorcycle accident attorney understands the dangers commercial trucks pose.
Holding Truck Drivers Liable for Hitting Motorcycles in New Jersey
To succeed in a personal injury lawsuit, our office will have to prove that a truck driver was negligently operating their vehicle and caused the accident. In a New Jersey court, an injured motorcyclist would have to demonstrate four separate elements to prove negligence.
Duty of Care
First, the truck driver must have owed the injured rider a duty of care. Fortunately, every motorist in New Jersey owes every other driver a duty to operate their vehicle safely. This includes obeying traffic laws and not driving recklessly.
Breach of Duty
The difficulty in many personal injury lawsuits is proving that the truck driver breached their duty of care. As stated above, driving recklessly or running a red light would be considered a breach of the duty of care. Some other conduct that would constitute a breach includes driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol or while texting.
The test for determining a breach of duty is asking the question, “what would a prudent and similarly trained truck driver do under the same circumstances?” For example, if a road narrowed due to construction, a prudent truck driver would probably slow their speed due to the confined traffic conditions. If your motorcycle was hit by a truck moving at an excessive speed through a construction area, it could constitute a breach.
By gathering evidence from the crash scene and other information, such as phone records or surveillance video, our New Jersey motorcycle accident attorney will try to prove that the truck driver’s conduct deviated from what a prudent driver would have done.
Next, our office must show that the breach caused your injuries. Once a breach of duty is established, it is usually not challenging to prove it contributed to an accident. The difficult part for an attorney representing a motorcyclist is overcoming the prejudice that their client is reckless. New Jersey follows the “modified comparative negligence” doctrine, meaning that a personal injury award could be decreased if the injured party was found to have contributed to the accident. Many defense attorneys will try to prove that a motorcyclist’s conduct played a role in the accident. Our experienced New Jersey motorcycle injury attorney understands the tactics they will employ and will aggressively argue against them.
Finally, you must have incurred actual damages. Unfortunately, when a motorcycle is hit by a truck, the rider often suffers severe injuries that require expensive medical treatment and long-term physical therapy. Furthermore, an injured motorcyclist is liable to miss days, weeks, or months of work. You are entitled to seek recovery for your financial losses, as well as your emotional and physical suffering. Our office will work to calculate both your economic and noneconomic damages.
Contact our New Jersey Attorney for Motorcyclists Hit by Trucks for a Free Consultation
Jerry Friedman, Esq., a long-time motorcyclist and experienced personal injury attorney, understands the thrill of riding and its inherent dangers. If you or a loved one was hurt in a motorcycle crash, contact our New Jersey motorcycle accident attorney for motorcyclists hit by trucks. You or your family should not have to bear the financial and emotional burdens alone. Our office will fight for your rights and your just compensation. Call 1-800-LAW-4-HOGS (1-800-529-4464) today for a free consultation and to review your options.