In Las Vegas, motorcycles are a popular means of transport. Motorcycles also provide residents a fun way of touring the larger wild area of Nevada State. Unfortunately, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation, most traffic fatalities in the state every year involve motorcyclists. Drug use among motorists is the leading cause of most motorcycle accidents in the United States. Injuries sustained in motorcycle accidents are generally more severe because of motorcyclists' vulnerability and exposure to outside forces. A motorcyclist is more likely to die in a crash than a motorist is because they do not have safety features like seat belts. If you are involved in a drug-related motorcycle accident, contact the Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Law Firm to help you claim compensation for damages sustained.
Overview Of Drug-Related Motorcycle Accidents
The major motorcycle accident contributors are drugs and alcohol. Whether legal or controlled, drugs pose a considerable risk to road users if consumed during or before driving. In addition, there are higher chances of a car driver not being able to focus when they hit the road while intoxicated. A motorcyclist would be exposed to more risks in such a situation because motorcycles are small and often not visible while moving on the same road as motor vehicles.
Intoxicated or impaired motorists have a slow perception and reaction time, thus increasing the risks of crashes. They also lack environmental awareness, which increases the probability of hitting motorcyclists.
Drug-related motorcycle accidents in Nevada are categorized as DUI with injuries. Therefore, as a biker, you could file a personal injury lawsuit if a car driver’s negligent actions cause you injuries in a drug-related motorcycle accident. In addition, if a motorist’s blood sample has a 0.08% blood alcohol concentration or higher, the vehicle driver could face charges for being influenced by both drugs and alcohol.
In some instances, recreational and prescription drugs could be associated with drug-related motorcycle crashes. When a car driver consumes certain legal drugs, they could make them impaired, preventing them from exercising the duty of care as a sober driver would do.
Many people, including law enforcement officers, quickly accuse the motorcyclist when a motorcycle accident occurs. It is essential to contact an attorney immediately after being involved in an accident with an intoxicated driver. An attorney will help fight for your rights and ensure that the other party does not take advantage of you.
Common Drug-Related Motorcycle Accidents In Las Vegas
Every year, Las Vegas experiences drug-related motorcycle accidents. The accidents happen due to different circumstances related to drug use. Some of the collisions include:
Parked Vehicle Accidents
Often, packed vehicle accidents occur in places where active lanes run parallel with parking spots. For instance, if a driver parks a car in an area parallel to busy highways and opens the door without checking on the on-coming motorcyclists, riders crash on the car's door and sustain severe injuries.
Rear-End Collisions At Intersections
These accidents occur when a motorist approaches intersection points, and because of drug intoxication or poor visibility, they hit the motorcyclist from the rear-end. Such collisions could throw the rider off the motorcycle, causing fatality in the worst cases of severe injuries.
Usually, left-turn accidents occur when a motorcyclist passes through an intersection. A car driver coming from the opposite direction could cause severe injuries or a fatal collision with the motorcyclist if they try to make a left turn in front of the rider.
These crashes often happen when a motorist hits a motorcyclist when they have the right of way. For example, right-of-way accidents occur when a car driver pulls from a parking lot and hits a passing motorcyclist or a motorist changes lanes and crashes into a biker.
Elements Of Negligence In A Drug-Related Accident
You got the right to sue a motorist for negligence in a drug-related motorcycle accident. You have to prove the negligent action in the lawsuit that led to the accident causing your injuries. As a plaintiff, some of the elements you need to prove to include:
- That you were involved in an accident because of the negligent actions of the motorist
- The motorist failed to exercise caution while driving. The law in Nevada calls upon all drivers to exercise reasonable care while driving. Failure to do so amounts to negligence.
- You sustained injuries and suffered losses. The motorist would not be liable at any cost if you were involved in a drug-related motorcycle accident and never sustained injuries. There is no proof of the loss and incident in itself. If you fail to prove the loss you suffered, you will not be able to recover the damages despite the accident.
The court will award you the appropriate compensation to cover all the losses if you prove all the elements of negligence. When the driver’s intoxication levels do not guarantee a claim for you, you will have a tall order to prove negligence in the drug-related motorcycle accident. You have to prove that the motorist's intoxication led to negligence that caused the accident. It is challenging to prove that a driver was under the influence of drugs. Unlike intoxication with alcohol, which is easy to prove, intoxication with drugs is not always easy to prove. For you to receive compensation, negligence should come out clearly. This is where an attorney comes in to help you establish the driver's negligence.
Proving Drug Influence In A Drug-Related Motorcycle Accident
As a rider, if you suffer injuries in a drug-related motorcycle accident, you have to prove that the motorist at fault was intoxicated. Substantial evidence is critical because Las Vegas is a tort auto insurance state. At times, it could be a daunting task if you take the case solely. Hiring a competent personal injury attorney would help you settle your case with the following submissions:
Drug intoxication would take the driver's attention off the road because of not being in their right state of mind. Such a driver will violate traffic rules like running a red light, drifting between lanes, or overspeeding. If your attorney provides sufficient evidence, a motorist could be accountable for such reckless actions.
Positive Drug Test
Police officers must always be present to manage the situation at the accident scene. Inform the police if you suspect intoxication in a motorist after involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident. The police will subject the motorist to a drug test, and the results will be crucial to your attorney for submission.
Physical Symptoms Of Intoxication
If the motorist was high on a controlled substance at the crash, they must have exhibited physical symptoms of intoxication. The physical symptoms could be slurred speech, drowsiness, bloodshot or red eyes, the stench of either alcohol or drug they took, and poor coordination. The prosecutor could conclude in your favor that the motorist was intoxicated and contributed to the accident if any of the symptoms were present.
Common Injuries Suffered In Drug-Related Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents are a common occurrence in Nevada and across the United States. Often, motorcycle accidents lead to severe and even fatal injuries because of the motorcyclist’s less protection against the crash. Some of the injuries you could suffer in a drug-related motorcycle accident include:
Traumatic Brain Injury
If you fail to wear a proper helmet while riding a motorcycle, a crash with a vehicle could throw you off the bike, causing severe head trauma. You could suffer an intracerebral hemorrhage or brain swelling in case of a fatal blow on the head. In addition, you could experience symptoms such as convulsions, loss of coordination, nausea and vomiting, headaches, slurred speech, all resulting from traumatic brain injury. You could also experience cognitive changes, which could cause problems with cognition, memory, learning, and other cognitive functions. You could also experience neurological issues such as vision loss, speech, and hearing.
You could suffer second and third-degree burns from manifold, engine, and exhaust after your involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident. This is because motorcycle engines have an average temperature of about 230 degrees and are often fully exposed. As a result, you could fall off the motorcycle and be exposed to the engine in the event of a crash. In addition, a victim suffers second or third-degree burns because there is no shield between a motorcyclist and the engine.
Other accident injuries include fractures. The wrists and pelvis are the most vulnerable bones. For example, you could suffer a wrist bone fracture while attempting to shield yourself with your hands. You could also suffer a fracture in the pelvis or hips by exposing your lower extremities.
You could also suffer a biker’s arm as you shield the fall with your arm. Other common injuries include road rash, which occurs when a biker slides on the road’s surface after an accident. Whatever injury you sustain in a drug-related motorcycle accident, you have a right to seek compensation for the injuries.
What You Should Do After A Drug-Related Motorcycle Accident
After your involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident, you should take the following steps:
Call The Police Or Dial 911
It is essential to file a motorcycle accident report with the authorities. Call the police if they are not at the scene of an accident. If you cannot do so, request someone nearby to do it for you. Every person involved in the accident should also remain at the accident scene unless seriously injured, calling for immediate medical attention.
Call Emergency Services Or Medical treatment.
After your involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident, you could freeze and have difficulty processing requests. If you need emergency services, you could signal the people at the scene by gesturing. If your injuries are minor, you could call to seek urgent medical care at the location. Several mobile devices and apps have been developed to automatically notify emergency services or even emergency contacts once an accident occurs.
Your primary concern should be to seek medical attention before doing anything else after your involvement in an accident. It is always best to get checked out by a medical professional as soon as possible, even if you do not think your injuries are significant enough to warrant medication. You could have suffered injuries that could develop and progress if they go without an assessment and diagnosis by a medical expert. In addition, the medical report from a medical professional would help you support any claim that you pursue.
Note Down Details Of The Accident
Takedown as many details as you can at the accident scene if you can do so. It is vital to gather as much evidence about what occurred for legal and insurance purposes. The essential details to record could include:
- What happened in the moments leading up to the accident
- Contact details of anyone who witnessed the accident or who arrived shortly afterward
- The damage sustained by your motorcycle and the car involved
- Registration numbers of the vehicle involved
- Photographs of the accident scene and the car
- Contact details of any other drivers involved
- Details of weather conditions, road conditions, and visibility
- Note down contact details of anyone who could testify regarding the accident cause
Ask someone else to note the details if you cannot do so. Furthermore, you should record any expenses or losses you incur in the weeks after the accident and keep the receipts. For instance, if you require public transport or taxis while going to work because your motorcycle is under repair, these are expenses. You should also record expenses like replacing your bike, riding gear, or helmet.
Contact A Personal Injury Attorney
Legal counsel is of great importance in any accident in Nevada. It is essential to save your memory of the accident and any evidence for your attorney if you feel you have a viable personal injury case. Your attorney, in many cases, will talk to the liable party and your insurance company to settle the case. Immediately after your involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident, you should contact an attorney since they will guide you on when and how to speak with your insurance company.
Contact Your Insurance Company
You should make your insurance company aware of the accident if your motorcycle suffers damages in a drug-related motorcycle accident. The company will require crucial information such as the time of the accident, date, and location. The company will also likely inquire about the police that came to the scene to make the report. The police report will be beneficial to your insurance company.
Damages You Could Recover In A Drug-Related Motorcycle Accident
You need a competent personal injury attorney to help you file a lawsuit and recover damages after your involvement in a drug-related motorcycle accident. You must also have suffered injuries or other losses from an accident to file a claim. After suffering damages in a motorcycle accident, the personal injury compensation you receive will depend on the circumstances of your case. For example, the court could award you higher payment if you suffer a permanent brain injury, a situation that will not allow you to resume work. Your payment could exceed that of a victim who later continues work after the treatment. Some of the damages you could receive include:
Your motorcycle could be fully or partially damaged after a drug-related motorcycle accident. The car driver will pay for the damages through insurance or directly. Often, the amount for compensation will be awarded after the insurer assesses the cost. You could receive damages for repairs and parts replacement if your motorcycle were partially damaged. You could claim a new bike if there was complete damage.
A motorist could be liable for your medical bills if they cause a drug-related motorcycle accident. You could claim reimbursement for the money you used while seeking treatment for your injuries. The motorist could pay the medical bills through the insurer or directly.
The treatment costs could include expenses of obtaining prescription drugs, physical therapy fees, and hospital fees. Paying your medical costs will relieve you and your family from financial strain stemming from rehabilitation and surgery. It is worth noting that the court cannot award you compensation for pre-existing medical conditions. Therefore, payment is strictly for medical costs related to motorcycle accidents.
Lost Income Or Wages
You could be receiving a regular wage or income if you would not have been involved in a drug-related motorcycle accident. However, because of injuries suffered during the accident, you could spend some time out of work, rendering you unable to earn an income. In such a case, the liable party should compensate you for lost earnings due to their wrongful acts or negligence.
Additionally, the motorist would be liable for your loss of earning capacity if you suffer permanent injuries that would hinder you from working in the future. If the accident limits your working capability, you also deserve compensation, thus cutting your total earnings. Your attorney could negotiate for you and settle on the best settlement for your damages.
Pain And Suffering
It is possible to recover damages for pain and suffering caused by a drug-related motorcycle accident in Las Vegas. You must seek the services of an experienced Las Vegas personal injury attorney, a pro at negotiation because pain and suffering damage is challenging to prove. The attorney would negotiate your case better if you could jot down a journal about your pain and suffering journey during the recovery process. A written description of your pain and suffering by a physician would also be enough evidence in the court to help you access adequate compensation.
Wrongful Death Compensation
You could file a wrongful death lawsuit if your loved one succumbed because of an intoxicated driver who caused the accident. The recovered damages often give the family a sense of justice though the claim will not bring back the deceased. The compensation covers lack of companionship, burial expenses, and medical bills.
Statute Of Limitations In A Drug-related Motorcycle Accident In Nevada
Ensuring you bring your case within the applicable time limit is essential to make a drug-related motorcycle accident claim successfully. This law is contained within the Limitation Act in Nevada law. A motorcycle accident victim is required to claim within two years from the accident date. The victims below 18 years are classified as minors, and they are not allowed to represent themselves in a claim. In such a situation, an appointed representative or relative also referred to as a litigation friend, would be allowed to seek compensation on behalf of the minor. If a minor turns 18 years, and no claim is made, their two-year period will begin to run from 18 years until their 20th birthday.
Additionally, a litigation friend could claim on behalf of the injured person if the victim lacks or loses the mental capacity to claim. The two-year clock of the mentally incapacitated victim will freeze if no claim is made until he or she begins the recovery and can represent him or herself.
It could be challenging to know the time limit for making a personal injury lawsuit in Nevada. Therefore, you would need to hire a competent attorney before initiating the lawsuit in such a case. Your attorney will guide you in preparing a convincing lawsuit and the applicable statute of limitations.
Find An Experienced Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Near Me
Many activities in your life could be upset by the effects of a drug-related motorcycle accident. You are likely to suffer severe injuries and damage to your motorcycle. In some fatal cases, you could lose a loved one in an accident. The injuries could not only affect your financial well-being but also be emotionally draining. At the Las Vegas Car Accident Attorney Law Firm, we have experienced attorneys who could help you recover compensation for any injuries you suffer. We do so by helping you identify the possible causes of the accident and the liable parties. Contact us at 702-576-0010 and talk to one of our attorneys.