Articles Posted in Motorcycle Accidents

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Driving on our roadways may now be more dangerous than ever with a number of recent vehicle-related safety recalls. Defective vehicle products can greatly increase your risk of being involved in a car accident in West Palm Beach and elsewhere throughout the United States, especially if you never hear about these recalls.

Luckily, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) offers consumers with a list of recalls. These recalls can be independently conducted by a manufacturer or ordered by the Administration. On their website, you can access public reports describing a number of safety-related defects of vehicle records or noncompliance with federal motor vehicle safety standards.

Our Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorneys urge that all residents sign up, through the agency’s website, for government alerts regarding major events that result in a recall determination, a description of the remedy and a schedule for the recall. Vehicle recalls can occur because of defective manufacturing of vehicles, tire, car seats, etc.

The NHTSA’s job isn’t done after they’ve informed the consumer about these recalls. They follow-up to ensure that the manufacturers provide owners safe, free, and effective remedies according to the Safety Act and Federal regulations.

An NTSHA recall notification letter contains the following information:

-A description of the defect or noncompliance.

-A description of the potential risks or hazards posed by the problem. This includes any warning signs of the problem.

-A description of the free remedy, including when the remedy will be available and how long the repair will take.

-A description of what the vehicle’s owner can do if they’re unable to have the problem fixed within a reasonable time and without charge.
Safety Defect/Noncompliance Notices Received in June:

-Volvo is recalling 2010 S60 models because the fuel pump may not be compatible with all fuel pumps and components. The result is an insufficient fuel transfer in the pump unit.

-Porsche is recalling 2010-2011 911 Turbo, Turbo S, GT3, GT3 RS and GT2 RS because the center locking hub and wheel assemblies can wear prematurely.

-Affinia is recalling their aftermarket front suspension lower ball joints.

-BMW has recalled certain models of their 2011 X3’s because the control module in the electric power steering unit could malfunction. This malfunction could result in a sudden loss of power steering.

-Kawasaki is recalling their 2009-2010 KLX250 motorcycles because the fuel tank could leak from cracks at the spot welds on the side mount tabs.

-Ducati is recalling 2011 Diavel motorcycles because the brass inserts installed in the chain can deform over time.

-Mazda has recalled the 2008-2009 models of the Mazda3 and the Mazdaspeed3 because the ground terminal of the windshield wiper could have been inadvertently bent when it was initially assembled.

-GMC is recalling 2011 Cadillac Escalades,Chevrolet Silverado HD, Silverado LD, Suburban and the Tahoe because the immediate steering shaft attaching bolts may not have been tightened correctly.

-Toyota has recalled its 2011 Siennas and Venzas because of the possibility that the front drive shaft could break because of insufficient heat treatment.

Luckily, there were no tire or car seat recalls in June. For more updates, please register with the NHTSA. Staying updated with recent vehicle recalls can help to keep you and your family safe on our roadways.
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Scooters accidents in Fort Lauderdale are a common danger during the winter tourist season. In fact, fatal accidents involving scooters and mopeds have more than doubled in recent years, prompting lawmakers in a dozen states to consider legislation aimed at improving safety, the USA Today reported.

Our Fort Lauderdale injury attorneys and West Palm wrongful death lawyers represent clients who are injured in scooter accidents, motorcycle accidents or other accidents involving tourists and/or rented equipment in South Florida.

Scooters, mopeds and motorcycles are often rented by the hour to tourists. In other cases, they are utilized by residents who enjoy the freedom and the economical means of travel. Inattentive motorists are frequently the cause of accidents. And accidents involving scooters and motorcycles often lead to very serious or fatal injuries.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports the number of fatal accidents each year that involve mopeds doubled from 2005 to 2009, from 48 to 96. Those figures likely do not account for all fatalities because of problems associated with classifying scooter and moped accidents in various states.

If motorcycle accidents are any indication, than Florida is a very dangerous state indeed: 1 in 10 of the nation’s fatal motorcycle accidents occurred in Florida in 2008, resulting in 523 of the country’s 5,290 motorcycle deaths. More than 96,000 riders were injured that year in accidents nationwide.

Only California (537) reported more motorcycle deaths than Florida.

The following safety tips are provided by

-Wear safety equipment: Including a helmet. Avoid wearing sandals, short sleeves and shorts. Wear gloves and a jacket made out of tough material.

-Obey traffic laws: Do not run red lights. If the moped does not activate the light, get off and push the sidewalk activator button. Keep to the right side of the road unless making a left turn.

-Remain Observant: Watch your surroundings. Don’t rely upon other motorists to see you. Use your mirrors and remember that the cars behind you can be just as dangerous as those beside or in front of you.

-Use Safe Riding Practices: Ride defensively. Avoid riding at night whenever possible. If you must ride at night, make sure your headlight is operating properly and wear brightly colored clothing.
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Motorcycle crashes declined dramatically in Broward and Palm Beach counties last year, a drop that state officials credit to safety training and driver awareness campaigns, according to the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel.

Our Palm Beach injury lawyers and Fort Lauderdale motorcycle accident attorneys hesitate to celebrate. Certainly news that 126 fewer people were killed in Florida motorcycle accidents during 2009 is excellent news. But the fact remains that 376 motorcycle riders were killed, representing about 1 in every 7 of the state’s 2,563 fatal traffic crashes. And, when the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration releases national figures in the coming weeks, Florida will likely once again join California as the nation’s most dangerous states for motorcycle riding.

We won’t let that keep us from celebrating the good news. But we urge South Florida riders — and particularly new riders — to keep the decline in perspective. Per mile traveled, motorcycle riders are 37 times more likely to die in a crash than the occupant of a passenger car. The majority of those accidents are the fault of another driver, usually someone who fails to yield the right of way.

Motorcycle deaths declined 24 percent across Florida last year, after more than a decade of steep increases, according to 2009 crash statistics released by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles.

Broward County fatal motorcycle accidents declined by 38 percent. In Palm Beach County, fatal motorcycle crashes declined by 47 percent.

Florida began a major push to increase motorcycle safety in 2008, after reporting that motorcycle accidents were responsible for 18 percent of the state’s traffic fatalities, despite making up just 6 percent of its traffic.

While the number of riders seriously injured in motorcycle accidents also declined, the state reports that more than 7,400 riders were seriously hurt as the result of a motorcycle crash in Florida last year.
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The Florida Department of Highway Safety has just released a comprehensive look at 2009 traffic safety and this is the first in a series of posts by the South Florida injury lawyers at Freeman & Mallard.

We believe taking a comprehensive look at the data will allow motorists to avoid car accidents in Port St. Lucie, Fort Pierce, Fort Lauderdale, West Palm and the surrounding areas. Knowledge is power and knowing where, when and why accidents are happening can be a powerful tool to help keep you and your family safe on the road.

The good news for motorists is that fatal crashes in Florida dropped to the lowest rate on record last year. The number of fatal accidents decreased 14 percent to 2,563 from the 2,983 fatal crashes reported in 2008.

As the Sun-Sentinel reported, fatal Palm Beach car accidents were down 30 percent, from 198 in 2008 to 151 last year. Fatal Broward County car accidents dropped 20 percent, from 228 to 189.

“While multiple factors influence the numbers, the declining trends are a testament to the emphasis that law enforcement agencies, safety advocates and businesses have placed on saving lives on our roadways,” said DHSMV Executive Director Julie L. Jones.

Most advocates cite less traffic and travel amid the downturn in the economy as the primary reason for the reduction.

Other highlights include:

-Alcohol related traffic fatalities declined 14 percent, from 1,169 deaths to 1,004. Note that those statistics still indicate that drunk driving is responsible for more than one-third of all fatal Florida traffic accidents.

-Fatal Florida motorcycle accidents declined by 24 percent, from 532 to 402.

-Fatal Florida bicycle accidents dropped 15 percent, from 118 to 100.

-Pedestrian fatalities in Florida decreased slightly, from 502 to 482.

-Fatal Florida accidents involving teenagers dropped by more than 20 percent, from 193 to 153.

In coming posts, we will take a more in-depth look at these statistics and see what can be learned by motorists that will help keep them safer on the road. Please check back often for updates.
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