Here we go again with another all-too-typical, and tragic, Central New York motorcycle accident caused by motorists’ amazing ability to overlook, fail to see, and otherwise be oblivious to, motorcyclists. The Syracuse Post Standard reports that a Syracuse man died Tuesday in a motorcycle crash in the Town of Sennett, Cayuga County, not far from our main personal injury law office in Auburn, New York. The biker was riding a 2003 Honda westbound. on Grant Avenue, when the car, ignoring the motorcyclist’s right-of-way, turned left onto Grant from County House Road and cut him off. The unfortunate biker was unable to avoid impact with the left side of the car.
You are almost twice as likely to be involved in an accident if you are on a motorcycle as compared to in a car. Why? You guessed it – cars don’t see you and end up cutting you off or hitting you, just like this motorist did to this biker.
The motorcyclist’s family will have a strong wrongful death case against the owner and driver of the car that cut him off. Even though motorists tend to not see motorcycles, the law REQUIRES motorists to see them. The defense, “gee, I just didn’t see that motorcycle coming”, is no defense at all.
What about insurance coverage for this guy’s poor, grieving family? In New York cars are required to have at least $25,000 in liability insurance coverage. In the wrongful death claim against the car’s owner and driver, the family can claim compensation not only for the “economic loss” they suffer as a result of losing their loved one (lost income support, medical expenses, funeral expenses), but also compensation for any “conscious pain and suffering” they can prove the motorcyclist suffered before he died.
Let’s hope this car had lots of insurance beyond the $25,000 minimum.