19-Year-Old Hospitalized With Critical Injuries Following a Motorcycle Accident in Brooklyn
Michele Mirman | Motorcycle Accident | December 3, 2019
A motorcyclist is in critical condition after he was struck by a car in Brooklyn. According to reports, the 19-year-old rider was traveling south on Pennsylvania Avenue when a car attempted to make a left-hand turn onto Hegemen Avenue in front of him. However, the Hyundai Sonata, driven by a 58-year-old man, struck the bike before the turn could be completed.
The force of the impact caused the teenager to be thrown from the motorcycle. He landed in the street and sustained severe injuries. Shortly after the crash, the rider was rushed to Brookdale University Hospital Medical Center for medical treatment.
The 58-year-old man who struck the rider remained at the scene but was not arrested following the accident. Even if he is not charged with a crime, he may still face civil liability for his role in this Brooklyn motorcycle accident.
Dangerous Left-Hand Turns a Leading Cause of Motor Vehicle Accidents
Left-hand turns can be difficult. Drivers have to be able to gauge the flow of traffic and time things perfectly to cross over lanes of opposing traffic safely. Unfortunately, left-hand turns are a common cause of accidents involving cars, motorcycles, buses, and other vehicles. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), left-hand turns account for about 22 percent of all traffic accidents.
Why are left-hand turns so dangerous? The NHTSA reports that the following factors might explain why left-hand turns contribute to so many accidents:
- Obstructed view while turning
- Misjudging the gap between vehicles
- Misjudging the speed of oncoming traffic
- Inadequate surveillance
- False assumption of others’ actions
- Aggressive driving
- Illegal maneuvers, and
- Internal or external distractions.
The motorcycle accident discussed above involved a driver who was 58-years-old. According to the NHTSA data, left-turn accidents involving drivers over the age of 55 tend are often the result of misjudging speed or the gap in traffic.
In other words, older drivers tend to be less accurate in judging how much time they can safely and accurately execute a turn. It’s possible that this accident happened because the driver assumed he had more time to turn safely than he really did.
Making an Unsafe Left Turn Can be Considered Negligence
When someone makes an unsafe left-hand turn in Brooklyn, accidents can happen. In those cases, the driver who executes an unsafe turn can be held financially responsible for resulting damages. That’s true, as long as accident victims – like the 19-year-old motorcyclist mentioned above – can prove that the driver was negligent.
Negligence, which is a cause of action commonly used as the grounds for a personal injury lawsuit, must be established by proving:
- The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care
- The defendant breached that duty of care in some way (e.g., making an unsafe left-hand turn)
- The plaintiff suffered an injury, and
- That injury was a result of the plaintiff’s behavior or conduct.
In other words, the plaintiff (injured motorcyclist) got hurt because the defendant (driver) failed to act in a way that would be likely to keep them safe.
Injured Motorcyclists Can Seek Damages From Any Liable Parties
Intersections, like the one at Pennsylvania Avenue and Hegemen Avenue in Brooklyn, tend to be particularly dangerous. In fact, more than 40 percent of all traffic accidents happen at intersections. That’s because there’s a lot going on:
- Pedestrians might be crossing the street.
- Bicyclists might be eyeing traffic to see if there’s a clear path to the other side.
- Drivers might get aggressive and try to speed up to beat a red light.
- Other motorists might decide to slam on the brakes when the light turns yellow.
- Ubers tend to hover around street corners while waiting for a passenger.
All of these things can significantly increase the risk of an accident. All of these parties can potentially be on the hook for harm stemming from an accident.
That’s why it’s important to investigate an accident after it happens. It’s critical to determine what contributed to the collision and who caused it to occur. In New York, accident victims can realistically seek compensation from anyone who caused them to get hurt. A thorough investigation can yield the information necessary to establish liability.