As a personal injury attorney, my job is to represent victims of accidents precipitated by the negligent actions of other individuals. Motorcycle riders may be one of the most common groups of motorists injured on the road, especially during the spring and summer months.
Unfortunately, traffic accidents involving bikes, such as Harley-Davidsons, Suzukis, Triumphs and Hondas, are usually severe and cause extensive bodily injury to the riders. More often than not, a crash with a passenger car or commercial truck can result in death. Helmets make a big difference, but in this life there are no guarantees.
The tragic part of the story is that many injuries and fatal crashes experienced by the motorcycling community could be avoided if other motorists took the added effort to check for two-wheelers sharing the road. As a Maryland motorcycle accident lawyer, I’ve seen enough horrendous accident scenes to last a lifetime. But I never tire of offering help to victims and their families following these kinds of terrible and sometimes life-altering collisions.
A little while ago we came across a news item that illustrates one of the worst-case scenarios facing motorcyclist on our public roads. According to reports, a 46-year-old Charles Thompson III of Hagerstown died while riding his bike along U.S. 40 in Frederick County. The accident happened just before 8pm when another motorist was attempting to enter the roadway in a 2001 VW Jetta.
According to police, 19-year-old Zachary Gunther, a resident of Myersville, was attempting to enter the eastbound lane of U.S. 40 off of Pleasant Walk Road and apparently pulled right in front of Thompson’s motorcycle. In the process the rider was thrown from his bike onto the roadway.
Emergency crews arriving on the scene administered first aid and then transported the severely injured man by helicopter to R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore. Unfortunately, Thompson’s injuries were too extensive and he died a short time later at the hospital.
Police issued the Jetta’s driver with a traffic citation for failure to yield the intersection right of way. At the time of the news article, local police were expected to approach the Frederick County state’s attorney’s office to discuss whether additional charges should be brought against Gunther.
Hagerstown motorcyclist dies following crash in Frederick County, Herald-Mail.com, May 7, 2010