In Georgia, the motorcycle helmet law has not changed since about 1969, but that is not true in all states. At one time, the federal government required states to enact helmet use laws to receive funding for highway construction. In the 1970s, this changed when Congress stopped the Department of Transportation from assessing penalties on the state.
Hitting the open road on a motorcycle is an activity enjoyed by many all across the country. While many of these travels end without incident, there are situations that unfortunately arise that can put a motorcyclist in great danger. Even when a motorcyclist obeys the rules of the road and takes care to be safe, some other vehicles may not entirely understand the needs of a motorcycle or respect them, potentially leading to serious injury or even death.
The onset of spring in Georgia coincides with the onset of motorcycle riding season. So, perhaps it is no coincidence that the month of May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is promoting the safety awareness campaign with a “Share the Road” effort.
Our Georgia readers may have seen a previous post here that discussed the merits of mandatory helmet laws and whether or not they play a significant role in reducing the number of fatalities or severe injuries that motorcyclists suffer when they are involved in accidents. As that post noted, that debate has been ongoing and intense, and it isn't likely to go away any time soon. But, a recent article did bring up a few so-called "myths" regarding motorcycle safety that may surprise some of our readers -- both motorcyclists and regular motorists.
Motorcyclists throughout the country may not experience any hotter debate than the arguments for and against mandatory helmet laws. As many of our readers most likely know, Georgia is one of the states that have laws making it mandatory for all motorcycle riders and passengers to wear a helmet at all times. There are 18 other states that do so as well. But, the big question when it comes to these laws is, "Do mandatory helmet laws reduce fatalities for motorcyclists?"
For all of the previous posts here regarding the danger presented to motorcyclists by other vehicles on the roads of Georgia, the fact remains that there is another danger on the roads that motorcyclists need to be aware of -- other motorcycle riders. Many of our readers have probably seen groups of motorcycles traveling down the highway at some point in time. How many have wondered, "What if one of those riders was intoxicated?" There is definitely a danger there, and the Georgia Motorcycle Safety Program, along with the Department of Driver Services, have joined together to warn motorcycles of the dangers of drinking alcohol and riding.
A previous post on this blog touched on the fact that the day and time that Georgia residents decide to take their motorcycle for a ride could make a difference in whether or not they are involved in a potentially deadly motorcycle accident. As springtime rolls into summer, there will be more motorcyclists on the roadways, and those statistics will probably become even more relevant. But, what happens in the aftermath of a motorcycle accident? What if, as the result of another driver's negligence, a motorcyclist is left with a permanent disability?
Most of our readers know that various entities, both public and private, keep track of a wide range of statistics on just about every aspect of life in America. Vehicle accident statistics, in particular, are useful to show where, how and when these accidents occur. The idea is that if we can figure out the cause of these oftentimes devastating accidents, perhaps we can take action to reduce the number of accidents that occur.
It can seem like an easy thing to say that drivers need to be aware of their surroundings when operating a vehicle on the roadways of Georgia. But, in reality, there is far more to it than that. In fact, there are groups throughout the country, including in Georgia, who make a special point of attempting to increase driver awareness of motorcycles in particular.
To most Georgia residents, a personal injury lawsuit is a chance to recover compensation for medical expenses that accumulate due to serious injuries caused by a negligent party. There can, of course, be other damages involved, such as pain and suffering and lost wages. And, many of our readers may believe that these personal injury lawsuits are probably rather formulaic. But, the fact is that each case presents its own set of unique facts and problems, and perhaps, none more so than cases involving motorcycle accidents.