Bad weather conditions can cause a devastating motorcycle accident. Dust storms, snow, ice, fog, rain, and dust storms can affect a driver’s visibility and create slick roads. Motorcyclists are especially vulnerable to bad weather because they have fewer safety protections, making them more exposed to the dangers of bad weather conditions.
At Hunt Law, we understand the upheaval and trauma caused by being injured in a severe motorcycle accident can be overwhelming. The attorneys at Hunt Law will advocate for you at every step. We have a proven track record of fighting for motorcycle accident victims to obtain the total amount of compensation they deserve. Contact Hunt Law today to schedule a free case evaluation and learn more.
Rain, Thunderstorms, and Fog Can Cause A Bad Weather Motorcycle Accident
During heavy rainstorms, the rain can obstruct visibility, making it more difficult for drivers to identify motorcycles on the road. Rain also creates slick spots on the road surface, making it easier for drivers and motorists to lose control of their vehicles. Sudden flooding can engulf a motorcycle more quickly than a motor vehicle because motorcycles are lighter and smaller. Dense fog can interfere with visibility, making it difficult for motorists to see small-sized vehicles like motorcycles.
Snow and Ice in Santa Fe
Snowfall can quickly obscure a driver’s visibility. Even if the sun is out and snow is no longer falling, the glare of the New Mexico sun can bounce off snowdrifts, blinding drivers to their surroundings. Ice is also dangerous when falling from the sky as hail or sleet or in the form of icy roads. It’s more difficult for tires to maintain traction on icy roads, which can cause them to skid. Many of these slippery spots on the road are nearly invisible. Snow and ice can also make it more challenging for drivers to avoid colliding with motorcycles in dangerous situations.
Heavy Winds and New Mexico Dust Storms
Dust storms occur when strong winds pick up dry soil and debris, lifting it into the air. The wide open spaces in the arid climate of New Mexico make New Mexico drivers vulnerable to dangerous dust storms. Recently, areas of New Mexico were hit with a dust storm that included wind gusts of up to 65 mph and blinding conditions.
Heavy wind storms make it challenging for motorcyclists to balance on their motorcycles, especially if strong winds are pushing them off course. Multi-vehicle pileups aren’t uncommon during New Mexico dust storms, but drivers have no opportunity to avoid driving in the storm. However, drivers still have a legal duty to drive reasonably under the circumstances.
- Check surrounding vehicles and slow down.
- Roll up their windows and close their vents
- Pull over or exit the highway immediately before the dust reaches them
- Don’t stop in a travel lane
- Don’t use excessive speeds
Proving Liability After a Bad Weather Motorcycle Accident
Ice, sleet, rain, and other bad weather conditions make driving hazardous. While none of us can control the weather, we can control how we respond to dangerous weather conditions while traveling. As with any type of car accident, victims need to prove that the other driver is liable for the motorcycle accident that caused their injuries.
When a driver’s negligent or unsafe actions worsen during a storm, they can cause a devastating accident with serious injuries. For example, when the driver ignores the hazardous weather conditions and engages in reckless behavior or driving while distracted, the victim may have a strong claim for damages. Some of the negligent actions drivers take that can cause motorcycle accidents in bad weather include the following:
- Driving too fast under the conditions, even when driving under the speed limit
- Following another driver too closely, also called tailgating
- Unsafe lane changes
- Improper passing
- Driver distraction
- Choosing to drive in extremely low visibility
- Driving while distracted during bad weather
- Driving with deflated or thread-worn tires
Injuries Caused by Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcyclists involved in bad weather motorcycle accidents are more likely to suffer serious injuries, even if they wear protective equipment like helmets. They can be thrown from their vehicle and suffer serious head and spinal cord injuries, including traumatic brain injuries. They can also suffer severe road rash, infections, bruising, internal organ damage, concussions, and more.
Treating these serious injuries can be incredibly expensive, especially for those who suffer a permanently disabling injury. These injuries can require ambulance trips, lengthy hospital stays, surgeries, and stays in long-term rehabilitation facilities. Victims may also require around-the-clock medical care or need to move into a residential care facility.
Recoverable Compensation After Being Injured in a Motorcycle Accident
What if you did everything you were supposed to do in a dust storm, snow storm, or another type of bad weather condition, but a negligent driver still struck you? If you’ve suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident with another vehicle in the accident that wasn’t your fault or was brought about by bad weather conditions, you can pursue compensation.
Victims can pursue a settlement from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. They can also pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit against the party or parties whose negligence caused their injuries. Under New Mexico law, personal injury victims are entitled to recover economic and non-economic damages, including:
- Past, current, and future medical expenses
- Lost income due to missed work because of your injuries
- Pain and suffering, anxiety, depression, diminished quality of life
- Mental anguish from the motorcycle accident and resulting injuries
- Punitive damages in some cases
Contact a Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Santa Fe, New Mexico
If you become injured in a bad weather motorcycle accident because of another person’s negligence, it’s essential that you discuss your case with a skilled attorney. The New Mexico personal injury attorneys at Hunt Law know how to hold insurance companies and defendants accountable for the injuries they cause. We offer potential clients a free, no-obligation consultation. Contact Hunt Law to discuss your case with an experienced attorney and learn whether you have a valid legal claim for compensation.