Unsafe Lane Changes
It is not uncommon for drivers to make quick lane changes without checking their blind spots or using their turn signals. While improper lane changes pose a risk to all travelers, they are especially dangerous to motorcyclists. Unsafe lane changes cause a significant number of motorcycle accidents, and these accidents typically result in serious injuries. Anyone involved in a motorcycle accident has a right to seek compensation from the person responsible for the accident and should speak to an attorney. Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident lawyer Joseph I. Lipsky can assist you in pursuing a claim against any party that caused the accident. Mr. Lipsky assists people injured in accidents in lawsuits in Fort Lauderdale and other cities in South Florida.Duties Imposed on Florida Drivers Changing Lanes
Florida’s motor vehicle code imposes a duty on all drivers to exercise caution when changing lanes. Specifically, the law provides that a driver making a lane change must ensure that the lane that the driver wants to enter is clearly visible and free of oncoming traffic. In other words, the driver must check to see if any vehicles are approaching in the lane to which the driver wishes to move and must determine that the move can be made safely. Drivers are also required to use their turn signals for a minimum of 100 feet before changing lanes.Risks of Harm Posed by Unsafe Lane Changes
When drivers fail to abide by the duties imposed by law regarding changing lanes safely, it can lead to an accident. Motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to accidents caused by unsafe lane changes for several reasons. Motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles, and other drivers are less likely to observe motorcycles traveling in adjacent lanes, especially if the motorcycle is in a blind spot. Motorcycles also lack the protection provided by cars and trucks. When they are struck by other vehicles, it generally causes devastating injuries. Motorcycle accidents can cause traumatic brain injuries, fractures, hemorrhaging, lacerations, and death.Recovering Compensation for Injuries Caused by an Unsafe Lane Change
To recover compensation for injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident caused by an unsafe lane change, the victim must typically show that the driver who caused the accident was negligent. In Florida, to prove a negligence claim in a civil lawsuit, the plaintiff must prove the existence of a duty recognized by law, a breach of the duty by the defendant, and quantifiable damages caused by the breach. In cases involving an unsafe lane change, the plaintiff can introduce evidence that the defendant failed to comply with the laws regarding changing lanes to support the argument that the defendant was negligent.
If the plaintiff’s lawyer successfully proves that the defendant was negligent, the plaintiff may be awarded economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages include medical expenses, out of pocket costs, and any lost earnings caused by the accident, while noneconomic damages consist of compensation for the pain and suffering caused by the accident.
In many cases, a defendant in a motorcycle accident lawsuit will argue that the plaintiff caused the accident and that therefore the plaintiff should not be awarded damages. In Florida, however, even if a plaintiff is deemed partially at fault for the accident that caused his or her harm, it does not bar the plaintiff from recovering compensation. It merely reduces the compensation awarded in proportion to the plaintiff's fault.Speak With an Experienced Fort Lauderdale Attorney
Careless drivers present a significant danger to motorcyclists. If you suffered injuries or the loss of a loved one due to a motorcycle accident caused by an unsafe lane change, you should speak with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer regarding the damages that you may be able to recover. Joseph I. Lipsky has the knowledge and skills needed to guide you in seeking a favorable outcome. Mr. Lipsky assists victims and families in personal injury lawsuits in Orange, Broward, Miami-Dade, Monroe, and Palm Beach Counties, including in Orlando, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Key West, and West Palm Beach. You can contact us through our online form or at 1-888-352-5298 to set up a confidential and free appointment.