Boston Motorcycle Accident — Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions that Boston motorcycle accident lawyer John J. Sheehan answers for clients:


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How do motorcycle accidents compare with other vehicle accidents?

According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), 4,462 motorcycle accident fatalities occurred in 2009, and an additional 90,000 motorcyclists were injured. The NHTSA 2008 data analysis showed motorcycle riders were 39 times more likely to die in motor vehicle crashes than motor vehicle passengers and nine times more likely to be injured.

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What is the Massachusetts helmet law?

Under Massachusetts law, both motorcycle operators and passengers in attached sidecars are required to wear protective head gear or helmets. The fine for not wearing a helmet is $35.

If I was not wearing a helmet, can I still pursue a motorcycle accident claim?

If another driver’s negligence caused your motorcycle accident, you can pursue a claim regardless of whether you were wearing a helmet. Massachusetts comparative negligence law entitles you to receive compensation if the other party was more than 50 percent at fault.

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What is lane splitting and how does Massachusetts law regard it?

Lane splitting refers to a motorcycle passing other vehicles while remaining in the same lane.  NHTSA reports that lane splitting offers motorcycle riders the option of escape when under threat of being struck from behind and slightly reduces crash frequency compared with staying within the lane and moving with traffic.

Massachusetts law provides that motorcycle operators cannot pass another motor vehicle within the same lane, except another motorcycle.

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Why is prompt investigation of a motorcycle accident case important?

Evidence can be lost and witnesses may become difficult to locate if an accident scene is not promptly investigated. Insurance companies oppose motorcycle claims, so the sooner investigation begins, the better chance your Boston personal injury attorney has to devise effective strategy and build a strong case.

Other articles related to Boston motorcycle accident attorney:

Boston Motor Vehicle Accidents

Feds Warn of Brain Injury Risks from Motorcycle Helmets

Massachusetts Reports Decline in Motorcycle Accident Fatalities in 2011