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What Is a No-Contact Motorcycle Accident?
Posted in Motorcycle Accidents on November 5, 2021
A motorcycle accident can occur for several reasons, including a driver’s failure to yield the right of way, distracted driving, speeding, and other types of negligent driving behaviors. Although many of these accidents involve a direct collision, not all motorcycle crashes are caused by an impact. In some cases, a driver’s actions cause a motorcyclist to maneuver in a dangerous way, leading to an accident.
These types of motorcycle crashes are known as no-contact accidents. Even though the driver did not directly collide with the motorcyclist, the driver may still be liable for the motorcyclist’s damages. If you are injured in a no-contact motorcycle accident, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Understanding No-Contact Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcyclists lack the same protections as a large, heavy motor vehicle, and are more susceptible to injury on the road. Motor vehicle drivers must stay alert and vigilant when driving around motorcycles. However, some drivers make dangerous maneuvers around motorcyclists, such as swerving between vehicles and lanes, cutting a motorcyclist off suddenly, or failing to yield the right of way.
In these situations, the motorcyclist will have to make a difficult choice: crash into the vehicle or swerve out of the way. If the motorcyclist chooses to swerve, he or she could lose control of his or her bike and crash.
The motorcyclist could also hit a hazard on the road, such as a pothole or lose gravel, and fly off the bike. In other cases, the motorcyclist can collide with another car or a stationary object while trying to avoid the original motor vehicle.
These are common examples of no-contact motorcycle accidents. Although these collisions do not involve a direct impact, they can still result in very severe, sometimes life-threatening injuries.
Can You File a Claim for a No-Contact Accident?
If you are injured in a no-contact motorcycle accident, you still have the right to hold the at-fault driver accountable. Washington is a fault-based accident state, meaning that negligent drivers are financially liable for their victims’ damages. You can file an insurance claim or lawsuit against the driver to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses.
However, you will need to prove that the accident would not have occurred if not for the at-fault driver’s negligent actions. You will need to gather sufficient evidence to support the following four elements.
- The at-fault driver owed you a duty of care. All drivers have a duty to operate their vehicles carefully and follow Washington traffic laws.
- The at-fault driver breached his or her duty of care through a negligent act or failure to act.
- The at-fault driver’s breach of duty caused your no-contact motorcycle accident and your resulting injuries.
- You sustained damages due to the accident that you can collect in your lawsuit.
For example, say that you are injured after a driver suddenly cuts you off without using his or her blinker, causing you to stop suddenly and fly off your motorcycle. The accident would not have occurred if the driver had given you enough time to let him or her merge. You can use evidence such as surveillance footage, witness testimony, and police reports to prove that the driver negligently cut you off and establish the breach of duty and causation.
Proving a no-contact motorcycle accident can be challenging without a lawyer on your side. After seeking medical attention for your injuries, contact a Seattle motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible to discuss your case and next steps.