Losing a loved one in a fatal motorcycle accident is a traumatic experience that nobody ever wants to experience. Unfortunately, motorcycle accidents are one of the most common types of accidents and be fatal. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 27 times more likely to die in an accident than passengers in a car. Motorcyclists don’t offer their drivers any protection, and because of their smaller size, they are harder to see in traffic.
If a loved one is involved in a fatal motorcycle accident, there are several steps that will happen.
Authorities Gather Evidence
When there is a death involving a motorcycle it is the standard operating procedure for most police departments to perform something called an accident reconstruction. Accident reconstruction involves many steps, but the first is that they will gather all of the evidence. Some of the things an accident reconstructionist will look at are the length of the tire marks, the impact on the injured person, motorcycle and the car, the time of day and weather at the time of impact, the angles of impact, and a host of other measurements in an effort to “reconstruct” how the accident happened. Some accident reconstructionist will review the conclusions of the autopsy. The police will also take many pictures and gather eyewitness accounts of the accident.
An Autopsy Will Be Performed
When someone dies as a result of an accident, it is standard operating procedure to have an autopsy performed. An autopsy will reveal how the person actually died.
A Report Will Be Issued
There are two important things to come from the police department: the official report, including the reconstruction, and the file itself. The file will contain all of the witness statements, pictures, and documents supporting the official report.
The Drivers Insurance Company Will Contact You
The drivers insurance company will reach out to try to get statements and gather information about you and the family of the victim. Be extremely careful about what you say to them because they all take statements on recorded lines. DO NOT PROVIDE ANY STATEMENTS ON A RECORDED LINE without consulting an attorney first.
Talk With Your Insurance Company
You should notify the victim’s insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. DO NOT PROVIDE ANY STATEMENTS ON A RECORDED LINE without consulting an attorney first. However, it is important that you give your insurance company notice that there was an accident resulting in the death of their insured. You should provide them with basic information:
- A descriptive overview of the incident
- A copy of the accident report
The Driver Could Be Arrested
If the driver was considered at fault in a fatal motorcycle accident, then they maybe charged with reckless driving, manslaughter, and/or driving under the influence.
Distracted or Reckless Driving
Distracted driving is the cause of many crashes and can result in heavy fines, even in incidents with no fatalities. If a driver was driving while texting on the phone, for example, and caused a fatal motorcycle crash, then he or she could face criminal charges and jail time.
Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or Alcohol
Another major cause of automobile accidents is driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. This activity is an offense that a driver could be arrested for. If the driver was driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol when they caused a fatal car or motorcycle incident, then they will be arrested.
Criminal charges do complicate personal injury lawsuits for fatal motorcycle crashes.
Contact a Lawyer
If a loved one was involved in a fatal motorcycle accident, you should consult a lawyer. The Law Offices of Sadaka Associates can help you navigate your next steps and support your case.