Jackson MS Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

The Jackson motorcycle accident attorneys at The Crowley Law Firm, PLLC, represent people who have been injured in motorcycle accidents throughout Mississippi. We have offices in Jackson and Gulfport to assist people statewide who have suffered injuries as a result of motorcycle accidents.

Motorcycle accidents are a serious problem, and have devastating consequences. Statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that 5,290 people were killed in motorcycle accidents in 2008 (the most recent year for which statistics are available). Another 96,000 were injured in motorcycle accidents the same year. A motorcycle rider is 37 times more likely to die in a traffic accident than the driver of a passenger vehicle.

Fatalities from motorcycle accidents have more than doubled in the last ten (10) years, as has the number of motorcycles on the road. According to the Insurance Information Institute, over 1 million motorcycles were sold in 2008 alone.

While the number of bikes on the road and the number of riders killed in motorcycle accidents has sharply increased, bikers have become more safety-conscious. For example, the use of DOT-approved helmets is at an all time high. Nationally, 67% of riders wear DOT-approved helmets. In states that require helmets, that figure jumps to 86%.

These statistics paint a grim picture. Even though motorcycle riders are safer than ever, motorcycle accident deaths continue to increase. The explanation for this is simple: most motorcycle accidents are caused by drivers of passenger vehicles that do not respect motorcycle riders rights and safety on the roadway. When this happens, our Jackson motorcycle accident attorneys hold them accountable.

Bikers face serious dangers on the road. The challenges of riding a motorcycle are unique. That makes motorcycle accidents different from any other type of traffic accident case. Our lawyers have expertise in representing people who are injured in a motorcycle accident in Mississippi. More importantly, we know how to get you fully compensated for the damages you've suffered.

Unlike some law firms, your case will be handled by an attorney, and not pawned off on some staff member. When you need to know the status of your case, you will talk to your lawyer.

If you’ve been injured in a motorcycle accident in Mississippi, you deserve more than one call. Please contact us at 601-944-1984 for a free consultation.

Motorcycle Helmets Don't Effect Hearing and Vision According to NHTSA

Jackson MS motorcycle accident lawyer discusses the effect of motorcycle helmets on hearing and vision of bikers.

It is well-established that wearing a helmet greatly increases the chance of surviving a motorcycle accident.  Across the nation, motorcyclists are doing an outstanding job wearing helmets and taking other measures to ensure their safety while riding.

The percentage of bikers who use helmets is high, even in States that do not require the use of a helmet.  In times past, one of the primary objections riders had to wearing a helmet was that a helmet would interfere with vision and hearing while riding.  Any obstruction to vision, or impairment to hearing, would obviously create serious safety issues.  However, a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that helmets have no significant impact on the ability of motorcyclists to see or hear while riding.

The NHTSA helmet vision and hearing study tested fifty (50) motorcyclists who operated their bikes on a 5.5 mile stretch of a four-lane highway.  To test helmets' impact on hearing, a vehicle followed behind each rider and blew its horn at a certain time.  The riders were instructed change lanes when they heard the horn.  To ensure that the test was conducted under "real world" conditions, the volume of the horn was varied from lower to higher.

To determine whether a helmet effects vision, the riders were instructed to turn their heads and look for other vehicles before changing lanes.  NHTSA observed the riders as they turned their heads, to determine whether the riders could regain the field of vision that is lost due to the helmet.

After the test was complete, NHTSA compared the results of the test against the results of the same test performed with riders without helmets.

As to hearing, the study found that there were "no significant differences in the riders' ability to hear" the horn, regardless of whether they were wearing a helmet.  In other words, a rider wearing a helmet can hear just as well as a rider without a helmet.

The results of the vision test also revealed no significant effect on riders' ability to turn and see traffic in adjacent lanes.  Admittedly, wearing a helmet decreases the lateral field of view.  However, the study found that riders compensated for this loss of view by simply turning their heads farther in order to regain the lost field of vision.  The riders were not instructed to do this, but did so nonetheless.  This appeared to be simple instinct on the part of the riders.  Because the riders compensated for the lost view by turning their heads farther, the helmets had no impact on the ability to see traffic in adjacent lanes.

Based upon this study, NHTSA concluded that helmets do not create safety issues or concerns based upon interference with sight or hearing. 

The bottom line is that helmets save lives.  You owe it to yourself and your family to wear a helmet every time you get on your bike.  If you have questions about motorcycle safety or accidents, please contact Jackson MS motorcycle accident lawyer Curt Crowley for a free consultation and case evaluation.

Jackson MS Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Discusses Motorcycle Safety Foundation Driver Training

The Motorcycle Safety Foundation (MSF) has developed a motorcycle safety awareness program for car drivers. The purpose of the program is to educate car and truck drivers on how to avoid a collision with a motorcycle.

The MSF safety program strives to let drivers know that over half of all fatal motorcycle accidents involve a collision with another vehicle. In the majority of those cases, the driver of the vehicle, not the biker, caused the accident. Because of the small size of motorcycles, they are easily hidden in blind spots, or by objects outside the car (fences, trees, etc.). This makes motorcyclists vulnerable to turns by other vehicles. The Motorcycle Safety Foundation stresses to drivers that they should actually turn and look for motorcycles before making a turn. Countless accidents and deaths could be avoided if drivers would follow this advice.

The small size of motorcycles makes them look much farther away than they are, when viewed in a side or rearview mirror.  Drivers of passenger vehicles need to be aware of this fact.  Many accidents are caused by drivers who see a motorcycle in the rearview mirror and think they have time to change lanes in front of the motorcycle.  Because bikes are much closer than they appear, and judging a motorcycle's speed from inside a moving vehicle is so difficult, drivers should always err on the side of waiting before changing lanes in the path of a motorcycle.

Another danger on the road is motorcycles being rear-ended by passenger vehicles.  Motorcycle riders sometimes reduce speed by letting off the throttle or downshifting.  While this does reduce the bike's speed, the brake light does not come on.  Drivers who are following behind motorcycles must know this, and not follow the motorcycle so closely.

In addition to safety tips, the MSF attempts to put to rest some of the stereotypes and prejudices drivers have against motorcycles.  In addition to pointing out that most motorcycle accidents are caused by other vehicles, the MSF also explains some of the more common reasons bikers drive differently than cars.  MSF presents this information in a tactful, nonconfrontational manner.

The MSF safety program does an excellent job getting the facts about motorcycles to the general public, as well as giving potentially life-saving driving safety tips. 

If you have questions about motorcycle accidents in Mississippi, please contact Jackson MS motorcycle accident lawyer Curt Crowley at 601.944.1984.

Jackson Motorcycle Accident Attorney Moves Quickly to Protect You After An Accident

After a Mississippi motorcycle accident, you may have a variety of people coming at you, none of whom have your best interest in mind. Most motorcycle accident victims are in no condition to deal with these people. That's why our Jackson motorcycle accident lawyers move quickly to handle bill collectors, insurance adjusters and others who may try to hurt you.

You may also have problems obtaining medical care. In addition, you've got to get paid for your property damage as soon as possible. We take care of these things, so you can focus on getting better.

Here's what we do immediately after a motorcycle accident:

Medical Treatment: If you don't have medical insurance, haven't met your deductible, or just can't afford to go to the doctor, we will help get you to a doctor who will treat you. These doctors will wait until the case settles before you have to pay. This allows you to get the medical treatment you need without having to worry about how you are going to pay for it.

Get the Bill Collectors Off Your Back: In injury cases, it is very common for motorcycle accident victims to be taken by ambulance to a hospital for emergency treatment. If you don't have medical insurance or haven't met your deductible, the hospital and ambulance bill collectors will start hounding you immediately for payment. We will contact the hospital, ambulance company or collection agency and make them leave you alone until after we settle your case. In most cases, you will never hear from the ambulance service or hospital again after we contact them.

Property Damage Handled for Free: We will handle your property damage claim with the insurance adjuster to get your property damage claim settled quickly. We never charge a fee to settle your property damage claim. We know that you need your property damage paid immediately, so we move fast to make the insurance company pay you the maximum amount the law allows for your motorcycle and other property lost in the accident. For more information about how we handle motorcycle accident property damage claims, please see our Motorcycle Accident Property Damage No Fee Guarantee.

Dealing With the Insurance Adjuster So You Can Focus on Getting Better: Motorcycle accident insurance adjusters are trained to contact victims as soon as possible after an accident. The adjuster's purpose in contacting you quickly is to try to gather evidence and get a statement from you before you have a chance to think things through and hire an attorney to protect you. The insurance adjuster knows you are hurt and vulnerable. He's hoping to take advantage of your condition, and banking on you saying something the insurance company can use to deny your claim or make it look like the accident was your fault.

When you hire a Jackson motorcycle accident lawyer at The Crowley Law Firm, we deal with the adjuster so you won't have to. After we contact the adjuster, he will leave you alone and deal with us. That way, you can focus on recovering from your injuries and will not have to worry about the insurance company taking advantage of you.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, please contact us to make sure your legal rights are protected. For a free consultation, please call 601.944.1984.

Jackson Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Discusses NHTSA Motorcycle Accident Safety Campaign

Motorcycle accidents in Mississippi are a serious problem. Nearly all Mississippi motorcycle accidents could be avoided if other drivers would simply look before turning or changing lanes.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recognized that motorcycle accidents and injuries are both serious and preventable. To bring awareness to this problem, and to protect bikers from careless drivers, NHTSA created a comprehensive motorcycle safety program.

The purpose of NHTSA's motorcycle safety program is threefold. First and foremost, the goal of the program is to prevent motorcycle accidents from happening. Second, the program is designed to prevent injuries from motorcycle accidents. Third, NHTSA's goal is to reduce the severity of the injuries from motorcycle accidents by ensuring that proper emergency medical care is available.

NHTSA's most visible motorcycle safety campaign is the Share the Road program. Through the use of billboards, posters and television commercials, NHTSA reminds drivers to pay attention and be alert for motorcycles. In other words, drivers need to "share the road" with bikers. Motorcycle riders have as much right to use the public roads as any other driver.

NHTSA's motorcycle accident prevention efforts are laudable. It is, however, a sad commentary that drivers have to be reminded to respect motorcycle riders.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, please contact us for a free consultation with a Jackson MS motorcycle accident lawyer. We will make sure your rights are protected and respected.

Jackson MS Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Explains Damages in Motorcycle Accident Cases

When you have been injured in a motorcycle accident in Mississippi, you are entitled to be compensated for all the damages you have suffered. Some of the damages you can receive are obvious (medical expenses, lost wages, etc.). However, there are many damages that you might not even know you can recover. In fact, there are many lawyers that frequently miss these damages. The damages you are entitled to recover include:

Property Damage: You are entitled to recover any damage to your bike. If the bike can be repaired, then the insurance company must pay for those repairs. If the bike is totaled, the insurance company must pay you the value of the bike. In addition, you are also entitled to be compensated for any equipment or clothing that is damaged. These items include your helmet (which should always be replaced after an accident, regardless of whether it looks damaged), shirt, riding jacket, riding pants, gloves, or any other property damaged in the accident. Many people, and lawyers, fail to take these items into account. This property is expensive, and we make sure the insurance company pays compensation for these items.

Loss of Use of Your Bike: You are entitled to compensation for any loss of use of your motorcycle after the accident. If the bike can be repaired, the insurance company is required to pay you the value of a replacement vehicle or rental while the bike is being repaired. If the bike is a total loss, the insurance company must pay you the value of a replacement vehicle from the time of the accident, up until the time they pay you for the totaled bike.

Loss of Value of Your Bike: Even if your bike can be repaired, the fact that it was in an accident may cause the bike to lose value. This is sometimes called “diminution of value.” The insurance company must pay you for the difference between the amount the motorcycle was worth before the accident, and the amount it is worth after the accident. Loss of value of a motorcycle is one of those types of damages that many lawyers fail to take into account when handling motorxycle accident cases.

Medical Expenses: Because motorcycle accidents usually result in more serious injuries, riders frequently have thousands of dollars in medical expenses as a result of the accident. The insurance company must pay you for every dollar of medical expenses you incur as a result of the accident.

Future Medical Expenses: Due to the traumatic nature of motorcycle accidents, many riders will have to incur medical expenses in the future–sometimes for the rest of their lives. The insurance company must pay these amounts. Your motorcycle accident attorney must secure estimates of these costs from your doctors and properly prepare this information in accordance with the law. It is very important that future medical expenses be included in the settlement, in order to avoid financial hardship in the future.

Permanent Injuries: You are entitled to recover money damages for any permanent injuries. An example of a permanent injury is permanent difficulty walking or “limping.” While it may not be possible to cure these type of medical conditions, the insurance company must pay you money damages to compensate you for these injuries.

Scarring: It is not unusual for motorcycle accident victims to have permanent scarring as a result of the accident. You are entitled to recover money damages to compensate you for this disfigurement. Also, because of advances in plastic surgery, this scarring may be removed. In those cases, you are entitled to recover the amount it will cost for a plastic surgeon to repair these scars.

Lost Wages: The insurance company must pay you for any time you missed from work as a result of the accident. In addition to your regular pay, the insurance company must also pay you for any overtime you would have earned. You are also entitled to lost wages even if you took paid sick leave, paid vacation or paid time off. In other words, even if you didn’t lose any pay due to your injuries because you took vacation time, the insurance company still has to pay you for the lost vacation time you had to take.

Loss of Wage Earning Capacity: If your injuries were so severe that you are unable to do the work you did before the accident, you are entitled to damages for loss of wage earning capacity. The insurance company is required to pay you the difference between the pay you were making before the accident, and the pay you make after the accident.

Permanent Disability: If you are rendered permanently disabled as a result of the accident, you are entitled to receive the amount of money you would have made from the date of the accident to the time you would have retired from work. This can total millions of dollars in some cases.

Physical Pain and Suffering: You are entitled to recover for the physical pain and suffering you have as a result of the accident. Physical pain and suffering in motorcycle accident cases is often excruciating. This is often one of the biggest parts of a Mississippi motorcycle accident settlement.

Mental and Emotional Suffering: Mental anguish and emotional pain and suffering is an often overlooked part of the damages in a motorcycle accident case. Mental anguish in a motorcycle accident case is usually much more severe than in other auto accident cases. This anguish may also be permanent, in the nature of post-traumatic stress disorder, and may result in the rider never being able to ride again. This is an important part of your damages, and should not be minimized.

We have the expertise and experience to identify all of these damages, put together the evidence to prove them, and make sure the insurance company pays you for all the damages you have suffered.

Jackson Motorcycle Accident Lawyers–The Crowley Difference

Most Mississippi motorcycle accident cases settle before trial. Almost all of our clients prefer to reach a fair settlement that fully compensates them for their injuries and damages, rather than going through a lengthy litigation and trial process. We make every effort to settle cases without having to resort to litigation. The reason we are able to obtain great settlements for our clients is because the insurance companies know that if they do not offer a fair settlement to our clients, we will go to trial to get our clients what they deserve. That’s a reputation we’ve earned by trying jury trials, and winning.

An insurance company knows if your lawyer will go to trial, and if your lawyer knows what he’s doing when he gets there. If your lawyer has a reputation for settling every case, for pennies on the dollar, and never going to trial, the insurance company is not going to offer you the settlement you deserve. If you hire a lawyer at one of these “one-call” settlement law firms, the insurance company knows they can offer you a small settlement, and your lawyer will probably make you accept it. These types of lawyers are known for “turning and burning” cases–taking low settlement amounts, getting their attorney fees and closing the case. This results in being offered a low, take-it-or-leave-it offer from the insurance company.

On the other hand, the insurance company knows if your lawyer will try cases. If your lawyer has a reputation for trying jury trials and getting results, then the insurance company will offer you a higher settlement to avoid going to trial. The Crowley Law Firm has developed a reputation for trying cases–even the most difficult ones. We’ve developed this reputation by never accepting unfair settlements, and never being afraid to go to Court to get our clients the money they deserve.

The bottom line is, we fight. And the insurance companies know it. That’s why they offer us great settlements. Put our experience to work for you in your Mississippi motorcycle accident case. Please call us for a free initial consultation.