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Negligent motorists are a threat to New Mexico motorcyclists

As more and more New Mexico residents travel by motorcycle, the risk of motorcycle accidents is likely to increase. Motorcycle accidents can be extremely traumatic for the victim as well as his or her family and loved ones since motorcycle riders often suffer serious injuries including head injuries and fractures. In some cases, a motorcycle accident can be fatal. Even the most experienced motorcycle rider cannot prevent the negligence of another driver.

In 2007 almost 84 percent more motorcycle riders took to the roads than in 1998. However, motorcycles, being small and light vehicles, may not be able to save the motorcycle rider from the effects of a motorcycle accident if another car or truck crashes into them. In 2013 around 2.3 million injuries were attributed to motorcycle accidents.

State authorities have initiated various programs in order to increase awareness of motorcycles by motorists and truck drivers who share the road with them. Motorcyclists are urged to take a safety course and wear a helmet. Motorists who finds themselves distracted are encouraged to pull over and deal with whatever is taking their attention from the road.

A motorcyclist who is injured by a motorist's negligence has the right to bring a lawsuit and seek monetary damages for their injuries. The case is presented to a jury which is asked to determine fault and award damages. Damages can be awarded for lost income, medical expenses and pain, scarring and disfigurement. Many cases settle out of court with a payment from the negligent party's insurer.

Source: WAFB.com, "Summer motorcycle season is here, stay safe," June 11, 2015

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