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The Roads, The Cagers and You

fallTime and time again, we have written about drivers of caged vehicles who cause serious accidents, injuries and fatalities to motorcycle riders. Over many years, patterns have emerged and worsened as drivers become more and more distracted and do not look carefully at the road or their surroundings. The visibility of a motorcycle and rider are key to rider safety. Riders can do all they can to be visible, but if a driver doesn’t pay attention and concentrate, a rider’s safety can be sacrificed.

We know that intersections are fraught with danger for motorcycle riders. Statistically, inattentive cagers who drive into an intersection to make a left turn can present a serious threat to riders. When a driver fails to yield the right of way to oncoming motorcycles or other vehicles and makes the turn, disastrous results can occur. Georgia riders have had their share of tragedy caused by failures to yield. Georgia law is clear in this regard. The Official Code of Georgia Annotated section 40-6-71 states that a driver attempting to make a turn in an intersection must yield to vehicles approaching. Drivers making a turn must quickly assess whether an oncoming vehicle is close enough so that turning would be hazardous. In my law practice, I have represented many motorcycle accident victims who have been struck by caged drivers because the drivers failed to see them. 

In a recent fatal motorcycle accident tragedy in Kentucky, this scenario which has led to tragedy so often, has another community in deep and sorrowful mourning. A beloved coach of the local middle school football program was killed as he rode through an intersection and a driver turned left in front of him. The loss of this man, by all accounts a wonderful community member and mentor to so many young people, is one of those very difficult things with which to come to terms. I see the way families react to tragedies such as this, and something that amazes me is the strength with which so many facing profound loss are able to face it with courage and grace. In a statement his wife provided to a local television station, she spoke of the love he had for her and their children and the fact that he loved life.

Bike riders come from all walks of life and across the economic spectrum. Some riders use their bikes as a convenient and economical way to get to work. Others just like to take a ride on the weekend with family or friends. Riders get out on the open road to feel the wind on a country ride and often have a particular love for nature and the outdoors. There are so many wonderful places to ride throughout Georgia. The joy of riding without the constraints of a closed car is one of the magnets that draws many to motorcycle riding.

I have noticed in my law practice that although motorcycle riders are passionate about their rides, they are often mistreated by insurance companies after an accident. It is important to know your rights and to be taken seriously if you have been harmed by another driver. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident, please call my office so that I can help evaluate your situation and protect you from insurance companies who want to compensate you as little as possible. Scholle Law is here to help and we are available for a free consultation.