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Road Rage and Motorcycles

by  on  Car Accidents & Motor Vehicle Collisions

The now infamous confrontation between the biker group called “Hollywood Stuntz” and the SUV with a young family inside has generated a national conversation about how bikers and automobiles can and should share the road. The helmet-cam video from one of the bikers that was uploaded onto You-Tube currently has over four million hits. People all over the country, and from all different perspectives–law enforcement, psychiatry, biker enthusiasts–debate how a “stunt” ended up with 2 bikers badly injured, one critically, and the driver of the SUV severely beaten. As of now, four bikers have been charged in connection with the incident, and one of them is an undercover policeman who is a 10-year veteran of the force.

What happened? Was this a case of road rage on steroids? Was this a biker gang looking for trouble or an SUV driver with a disregard for motorcyclists? This particular confrontation highlights the issues pertaining to a new breed of bikers: daredevils on high-performance bikes. This new breed is mostly a younger generation into the “rush” of speed and the thrill of splitting lanes. These tactics are extremely dangerous for public safety, the police pursuing them, and the bikers themselves.

But to put the blame entirely on bikers would be wrong; many automobile drivers feel nervous sharing the road with motorcycles even when the bikers are obeying traffic laws. So how do we avoid getting into an accident and/or confrontation like the one that happened in New York? Your Denver motorcycle crash lawyer believes that both bikers and drivers would benefit from following some simple rules of the road.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (“FMCSA”) has a few tips for bikers:

  1. Never stay in blind spots
  2. Always wear a helmet and protective clothing
  3. Drive to survive: drive defensively, follow the laws of the road; don’t weave in and out of lanes or share a lane. With a car, do NOT instigate aggressive driving
  4. Perform regular maintenance on your motorcycle
  5. Watch your speed!

There are similar safety tips for drivers sharing the road with bikers:

  1. Use a 2-second rule to increase your distance between your car and a biker
  2. Respect Mother Nature: bad weather is extra bad for bikers, so be extra careful and give them extra space
  3. Look before turning
  4. Check blind spots
  5. Be nice!

Be nice. Imagine if that simple suggestion for behavior while on the road had been followed by everyone involved in the incident in New York. Aggressive behavior is pandemic in our culture, and aggressive driving is only one example of it. Aggressive driving takes many forms–tailgating, speeding, gesturing, swearing and confrontations are all manifestations of aggressive driving that can spiral out of control into road rage. You do not need to be involved in a huge incident like the one in New York in order to benefit from a visit to a Denver motorcycle crash lawyer qualified to handle your case.

So if you have been the victim of any kind of road rage involving a motorcycle, whether you are the biker or the driver of a car, you should seek the sound legal advice of a lawyer that has experience with motorcycle crashes in the Denver area. Visit the Levine Law Firm website for more information.