Pennington NJ Motorcycle Accident Safety Equipment Attorney
Personal Injury Lawyers with Offices in Mercer County, New Jersey
The majority of motorcycle accidents are actually caused by other drivers. However, this does not excuse motorcyclists from taking steps to protect themselves in the event of an accident. Unfortunately, many motorcycle riders do not want to wear safety equipment because they associate riding a bike with a greater sense of freedom. Safety gear is necessary if you want to avoid catastrophic injuries. It is critical that you wear protective gear when operating a motorcycle because doing so will greatly minimize the likelihood of a severe injury. Safety equipment for motorcycle riders may include helmets, goggles, mouthpieces, knee pads, and hip pads.
Cohen & Riechelson is a law firm with a track record of success in New Jersey. Our personal injury attorneys have more than 40 years of experience representing motorcycle accident victims in Mercer County, NJ, including East Windsor, Hightstown, and Hopewell. Additionally, our familiarity with local courtroom procedure and personnel gives us an edge in your case because we have specialized institutional knowledge. Call CR now to discuss your motorcycle accident injury case.
Motorcycle Helmet Use in Mercer County NJ
The most important piece of protective gear that a motorcycle rider can equip themselves with is a motorcycle helmet. Although a helmet alone will not always protect a motorcycle rider against serious injury, it is still beneficial to wear a helmet. Your survival could hinge on whether you choose to wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle.
In fact, all motorcycle riders on New Jersey roads are required to wear a helmet. If you were not wearing a helmet at the time of your motorcycle accident, this could affect your claim; however, you will still have the right to file a claim for damages in accordance with comparative negligence law.
Wearing Motorcycle Protective Gear in Princeton NJ
When selecting a helmet, you should be aware that it doesn’t just protect your head; a helmet can also shield your eyes from severe damage in the event of a motorcycle accident. That’s why you should consider wearing a helmet with eye covering to protect against eye injuries. Additionally, goggles will ensure that your vision remains unblocked while riding your motorcycle. They can also protect your eyes against wind while driving.
Protective gear can also shield other body parts from serious motorcycle accident injuries. For example, boots and gloves can help to prevent lacerations in the event of a motorcycle crash. Moreover, motorcycle riders should also consider wearing highly visible jackets with bright colors. This can ensure that the motorcycle does not blend in with the rest of traffic.
The Five Motorcycle Gear Must-Haves and How Each Protects The Rider
The helmet is by far the most critical piece of safety equipment when riding a motorcycle. Drivers and passengers should always wear one. Look for helmets that meet safety standards set by organizations such as the Department of Transportation (DOT). These standards ensure the helmet has undergone rigorous testing and provides adequate protection.
If you’re taking a motorcycle ride anytime soon, put on a helmet before you hit the road. However, choosing just any helmet won’t cut it; it should fit properly and meet safety standards. To get the proper fit, the helmet must sit on your head snugly without being too tight or loose.
It should also cover your forehead evenly and have no pressure points that cause discomfort. You can try different shapes and sizes to find one that fits your head shape best since several types of helmets are available such as full-face, modular (flip-up), and open-face. Full-face helmets offer maximum coverage and protection while riding compared to other options. On the other hand, open-face helmets allow more ventilation and visibility but offer less coverage; therefore, you need goggles to protect your eyes while wearing this type of helmet. Good ventilation is critical for rider comfort during humid or hot weather conditions while preventing fogging on the visor. Helmets with vents in the chin area, forehead, and top are highly beneficial in providing excellent airflow. The visor or shield should be scratch resistant and offer an unobstructed view with no distortions.
Finally, never compromise safety over style preferences when selecting a helmet design. Always prioritize protective features, even if it means passing up some fancy patterns or hues. A properly fitting helmet can save you from severe head injuries in case of an accident.
Choosing a motorcycle jacket is important as it provides protection, comfort, and style while riding. Look for jackets made of durable and abrasion-resistant materials such as leather or textile with reflectors or bright colors. Leather jackets are known for their strength and durability, while textile jackets offer breathability and resistance to the elements. Ensure the jacket has good safety features like armor or padding in critical areas such as the shoulders, elbows, and back; if you ride in places where the weather can change on a dime, consider a jacket with a removable or waterproof liner. This allows you to adapt to changing weather by adding or removing the liner as needed. Additionally, jackets with adjustable collars and cuffs help to seal out cold air and rain. The more protection you wear, the better your chances of avoiding traumatic injuries in case of a crash.
On the occasion that you fall from your motorcycle, you will probably put your hands down out of instinct to break your fall. Leather or Kevlar gloves protect your fingers and palms from road rash or lacerations. It is important that your wrists and the beginning of your forearm are covered completely and that your jacket overlaps the bottom 3-4cm of the glove so that no bare skin is showing. Your gloves should have a strap around the wrist that is held by a wide strip of Velcro or a metal loop. Try the gloves on for several minutes to ensure they fit firmly but don’t restrict circulation.
Riding pants are another part of safety gear you should consider because they protect your legs in the event of an accident. Pants are usually made from leather or textile and should have protective material for the hips, shins, and knees. It is tempting to forego protective pants and trade them for comfortable shorts on those hot summer days, but that leaves nothing between your skin and the road. When your bike skids sideways across 25 yards of payment, you will wish you had put safety first.
Boots are one of the most critical components of motorcycle safety gear. They can prevent broken ankles or feet. The boots should have reinforced toe caps, ankle protection, and sturdy soles. Opt for boots made from durable and abrasion-resistant materials such as leather or synthetic textiles. Leather boots are known for their durability and provide good protection. Textile boots are often lighter, more breathable, and can offer waterproof capabilities. Check the quality of stitching and overall construction for durability. Look for boots with adjustable closures such as laces, straps, or buckles to ensure a proper fit. The sole of the boot should provide good grip and traction on various surfaces. If you ride in wet weather, look for boots with waterproof or water-resistant features to keep your feet dry. If you ride a motorcycle with a manual transmission, a reinforced shift pad on the boot’s upper area can protect against wear and tear caused by shifting gears.
Tips For Maintaining Your Safety Equipment in Good Condition
Proper care and maintenance of your motorcycle gear, including your helmet, boots, gloves, pants, and jacket, can help prolong their lifespan and ensure optimal performance.
Motorcycle Helmet: Clean the helmet regularly using mild soap or helmet cleaner, warm water, and a soft cloth. Avoid using abrasive cleaners that can damage the helmet’s finish. Inspect the helmet for any signs of damage, such as cracks, dents, or loose padding. Replace the helmet if it has been involved in a crash or shows any signs of structural compromise. Check and replace the helmet’s visor if it becomes scratched or worn. Avoid hanging it on handlebars or mirrors, as this can cause damage.
Motorcycle Boots: Clean your boots regularly using a soft brush and mild soap or boot cleaner. Remove dirt, grime, and any debris from the surface. Check the soles and heels for wear. Replace them if they are worn down significantly to maintain proper traction. Keep the boots conditioned and moisturized using appropriate leather conditioners or treatments. This helps prevent the leather from drying out and cracking.
Motorcycle Gloves: Clean the gloves according to the manufacturer’s instructions, usually with mild soap and water. Some gloves may be machine washable but always check the care label first. Check for any loose stitching, tears, or worn-out areas. Repair or replace gloves if necessary to maintain their protective qualities.
Motorcycle Pants and Jacket: Check the care instructions provided by the manufacturer and follow them for cleaning and maintenance. Use a gentle cycle and mild detergent if the pants and jacket are machine washable. Soak them in mild soapy water if they require hand washing and rinse thoroughly. Check for any damage, such as tears, loose stitching, or worn-out areas. Repair or replace the items if necessary. If the pants and jacket have removable armor or inserts, follow the manufacturer’s instructions for their removal, cleaning, and reinstallation.
Motorcycle safety gear is an investment in your safety and well-being, and it is expensive, so it behooves you to take special care in its maintenance. Also, it is of utmost importance to check for any holes, cracks, loose threads, or other damage and replace them promptly.
Can I Still Pursue Compensation If I Wasn’t Wearing a Helmet in NJ?
Because New Jersey has a helmet law, insurance companies and legal defense teams may argue that your failure to wear a helmet contributed to your injuries or increased their severity. They may use this as a defense to reduce or deny your claim. They might argue that your negligence or failure to follow safety regulations affected the outcome.
However, the specific circumstances of the accident and the applicable laws in your jurisdiction can also influence the outcome. It’s essential to consult with a personal injury attorney who regularly handles claims involving motorcycle accidents in New Jersey. Our lawyers can evaluate your case, consider the relevant laws, and provide advice tailored to your situation.
What Happens If the Safety Equipment Was Defective and Led to My Injuries?
If the safety equipment was defective, you may have grounds for a product liability claim against the equipment’s manufacturer, distributor, or retailer. Product liability claims typically fall into three categories. When the product’s design is inherently dangerous or flawed, it is a design defect. A defect that occurs during manufacturing, making the product different from its intended design, is a manufacturing defect. If the product does not have proper warning labels or instructions about potential risks or limitations, it could be considered defective, which is called a failure to warn.
If the defective safety equipment contributed to your injuries or worsened their severity, it can be an essential factor in your personal injury case. It may support your claim for compensation and help establish the liability of the manufacturer or distributor.
To successfully pursue a product liability claim, you will need to establish that the safety equipment was defective or had a design flaw; that defect existed when the equipment left the manufacturer or distributor. The defect caused or significantly contributed to your injuries. You were using the equipment as intended or reasonably expected to be used.
It is crucial to preserve defective safety equipment as evidence. Do not alter or repair the equipment without consulting with your attorney, as it may affect the integrity of the evidence. Documenting the condition of the equipment, taking photographs, and obtaining any receipts or purchase records can also be helpful.
Contact a Lawrence NJ Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyer for Immediate Assistance
Motorcycle riders face some of the most severe injuries in motor vehicle accidents. Injuries that can leave you permanently disabled, unable to provide for yourself and those you love most. The insurance company is only interested in spending the least amount of money possible for your settlement, which is why you need a knowledgeable, committed attorney such as ours to handle your personal injury case.
The personal injury lawyers at Cohen & Riechelson are here to listen to your story and advise you on the best legal options available to you. We will help you to obtain the maximum compensation for your losses because we are excellent negotiators, but if need be, we will go to court to fight for a fair financial settlement. Personal injury law is complex. We know your case is unique and will keep you up to date as your case progresses.
Our firm serves motorcycle accident victims and their families in Lawrence, Lambertville, Princeton, Hamilton, Ewing, West Windsor, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Burlington County, and throughout New Jersey. Additionally, we work on a contingency, which means we don’t get paid if we don’t win. Call us today at (609) 528-2596 to discuss your case, or email us to schedule a free consultation at our offices in Hamilton or Pennington, NJ.