Understanding Injuries Sustained by Motorcyclists
May is recognized as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, an important time to put the spotlight on the vulnerability of bikers and understand the severe, life-changing injuries that frequently affect riders in motorcycle accidents.
The toll of these injuries can be devastating, from broken bones and spinal cord injuries to traumatic brain injuries and road rash.
Here's a closer look at some of the most common injuries that riders face on the road.
10 Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries
Broken bones and fractures
Motorcycle accidents often result in fractures and broken bones due to the direct impact between the rider and the road or another vehicle. These injuries commonly affect the limbs, such as the arms, legs, wrists, and collarbones. Fractures can vary in severity, ranging from hairline fractures to complex breaks requiring surgical intervention.
Road rash and severe abrasions
Road rash commonly occurs when a motorcyclist falls or is thrown from their bike during an accident. As their body skids across the rough road surface, the friction tears away at the skin, resulting in abrasions. The arms, legs, and shoulder are the most vulnerable parts of the body to a direct impact and often are the site of road rashes. The severity can range from minor scrapes to more profound wounds that can expose the underlying tissue.
Soft tissue injuries
Sprains, strains, and other soft tissue injuries are common in motorcycle accidents. These injuries can affect muscles, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, and other connective tissues, leading to pain, swelling, limited mobility, and long-term discomfort.
Head and brain injuries
Even when wearing helmets, riders can still suffer skull fractures, concussions, contusions, or more severe brain injuries. TBIs can lead to cognitive impairments, memory loss, personality changes, and long-term disabilities.
Spinal cord injuries
Motorcycle accidents can cause severe spinal cord injuries, which can result in partial or complete paralysis. These injuries can have lifelong implications, affecting the rider's mobility, sensation, and overall quality of life.
Hand and arm injuries
As a rider is thrown or falls off their bike, they often instinctively reach out their arms to brace for impact. This reflex can result in substantial harm to the arm, known as "biker's arm." Biker's arm is an injury that refers to nerve damage to the nerves responsible for controlling the movement and sensation of the arm. Additionally, the hands and wrists are prone to injuries such as fractures, dislocations, and sprains.
Internal organ damage
The force of a motorcycle crash can result in internal injuries, such as ruptured organs, internal bleeding, or damage to the kidneys, liver, or spleen. These injuries may require emergency surgery and can have life-threatening consequences if not treated promptly.
Amputations or severe limb injuries
In catastrophic accidents, motorcycle riders may suffer amputations or severe limb injuries. The loss or impairment of a limb can profoundly impact a person's independence and ability to perform daily activities.
Burn injuries can occur from contact with hot surfaces, engine components, or from road rash. A motorcycle's engines and exhaust pipes can reach extreme temperatures, causing burns when in contact with skin. Burn injuries can cause excruciating pain, blistering, and swelling. They are also more prone to the risk of infections and require prompt and specialized medical care for an effective recovery.
Riders often sustain facial fractures, including broken noses, jaws, or cheekbones. Additionally, facial lacerations and deep cuts may require sutures or reconstructive surgery to restore appearance and function.
Justice for injured motorcyclists
With minimal protection, motorcyclists often bear the brunt of severe injuries that demand extensive medical care. In addition, the financial burden can quickly mount, adding stress to an already difficult situation.
At Recht Law Offices, our dedicated team of experienced motorcycle accident lawyers stands up for the rights of injured riders. We fight relentlessly to ensure our clients receive the full and fair compensation they deserve.
We believe in holding negligent parties accountable and will diligently pursue your case to achieve the best possible outcome. You don't have to face the aftermath of a motorcycle accident alone. Contact us today for a free case evaluation to see how we can help you.