Anyone that’s injured their neck knows how serious and debilitating it can be. The neck is one of the human body’s most vital-and most fragile–bone and muscle groups, with seven bones comprising the cervical vertebrae. Fractures of any of these, obviously, create severe complications and can even be fatal in certain circumstances.
Bone fractures in the neck are a common and severe injury in Kentucky motorcycle accidents, particularly in high-speed collisions or accidents where the rider is thrown from the bike. Because fracture injuries are so common and severe in motorcycle accidents, it’s crucial for Kentucky’s many motorcycle riders to understand the risks and take appropriate precautions to prevent such injuries from occurring.
Contact Kaufman & Stigger Today For a Free Consultation
It’s not always possible to avoid a motorcycle accident; unfortunately, they often result in serious injuries. If you or a loved one have been injured in a Kentucky motorcycle accident, Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC can provide you with vital support to aid your recovery. Our team of experienced and dedicated Kentucky motorcycle accident lawyers has developed a proven system to deal with these accidents and help our clients get the support and compensation available to them under the law. To learn more about how we can help you, contact us for a free consultation.
How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents in Kentucky?
Kentucky is a popular destination for motorcycle riders due to its diverse landscape, which ranges from rolling hills to the Appalachian Mountains, and its scenic byways and winding roads. However, riding a motorcycle in Kentucky can also be risky, as riders face a higher likelihood of injury or death compared to other motor vehicle drivers.
Data from the Kentucky Transportation Center’s (KTC) 2021 annual report found that there were:
- 1,491 total motorcycle accidents statewide
- 942 injuries in these accidents
What this data shows is that riding a motorcycle in Kentucky comes with a significant risk of both accident and injury. Worse yet, the factors that contribute to these accidents are just as common in Kentucky as they are anywhere else. Thus, it’s extremely important to understand these factors and how they play into motorcycle accidents.
Leading Causes of Kentucky Motorcycle Accidents
When considering the leading causes of Kentucky motorcycle accidents, you quickly realize that they are varied and often involve a combination of factors. Some of the most common contributing factors to motorcycle accidents in Kentucky include:
- Speeding – Speeding is a frequent cause of all types of vehicle accidents in Kentucky, but is especially present in motorcycle accidents. When a driver is speeding or otherwise driving recklessly, they may not have time to either see or react to a motorcycle. Further, the high speeds involved in a collision usually result in injuries to the rider, with neck fractures being a common one.
- Distracted driving – Another major cause of accidents involving motorcycles is when a driver in the other vehicle is distracted. This inattentiveness can be caused by multiple factors, like looking at their phone, changing the radio, eating, or being distracted by others in the vehicle.
- Failure to yield – One of the most frequent causes of motorcycle accidents in Kentucky is when another driver fails to yield and collides with the rider. Any collision between a motorcycle and another vehicle can jolt or knock the rider off the motorcycle, which can frequently lead to neck fractures.
- Driving under the influence – Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is an unfortunate and extremely dangerous act that is common in Kentucky. When drivers are impaired, their reaction time is extremely dulled and they aren’t always able to react to motorcycle riders. Worse, these impaired drivers are often moving at extremely high speeds and in a reckless manner, which can create even more dangerous circumstances for those on a motorcycle.
Understanding the Severity of Neck Bone Fractures
Fractures of the neck bone, which are also referred to as cervical spine fractures, can vary in severity depending on where and how severe the injury is. The severity of the fracture can be determined by a number of factors, such as:
- Location – The cervical spine is divided into seven vertebrae, with each vertebra numbered from C1 to C7. The location of the fracture can determine the severity of the injury. For example, a fracture at the base of the skull (C1) or at the top of the neck (C2) can be more severe and life-threatening than a fracture at the lower part of the neck.
- Type of fracture – Neck bone fractures can be classified into different types based on the pattern of the break. For example, a compression fracture occurs when the bone is crushed, while a burst fracture occurs when the bone is shattered into multiple pieces. The type of fracture can determine the extent of damage to the spine and surrounding tissues.
- Neurological symptoms – Damage to the spinal cord or nerves can cause neurological symptoms, such as paralysis, numbness, or weakness in the arms, legs, or other body parts. The presence and severity of these symptoms can indicate the extent of the injury and the potential for long-term complications.
- Overall health – The severity of a neck bone fracture can be influenced by the patient’s overall health and medical history. For example, older adults or people with preexisting medical conditions may be more susceptible to complications and slower healing.
Obviously, seeking medical attention after one of these injuries is crucial to your diagnosis and eventual recovery. In many cases, fracturing the bones in your neck can even be life-threatening, so getting care as soon as possible after a motorcycle accident is also important. In terms of treatment, it varies based on the severity of the injury. Usually, though, it involves immobilization and eventual surgery. After that, you are likely in for specialized ongoing care and rehabilitation.
Assessing Damages in a Kentucky Motorcycle Accident Claim
Trying to put a dollar amount on your damages after a Kentucky motorcycle accident is not always easy. While a neck bone fracture and its related costs can be quantified, what can’t always be quantified is the loss of your enjoyment of life and ability to spend quality time with your family. Worse yet, if the neck fracture is fatal, it creates a whole new level of damage that your surviving loved ones will need to pursue.
Kentucky law gives accident victims the ability to pursue these damages against the at-fault party, usually the driver of the other vehicle that caused the accident. Not surprisingly, damages like a neck bone fracture are quite extensive in terms of the medical expenses they can cause. By filing a claim for damages, you and your family can at least get some of that back.
Legally, this is accomplished by filing a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company. In order to be fully and fairly compensated, you’ll need to assess your damages. It’s here that working with our team can be crucial. We have the experience and resources necessary for you to get a proper accounting of all your accident-related costs and damages so that you can make a strong claim for them under the law. Generally, these damages include:
- Medical expenses and costs
- Damage to your motorcycle or other property
- Costs related to your emotional distress
- Costs related to your pain and suffering
- Funeral or burial costs, in the event the accident was fatal
While every claim is unique, what you’re ultimately able to recover depends on how you approach your claim and how well you can assess your damages. By working with our team of experienced Kentucky motorcycle accident lawyers, we can help you determine the full extent of your damages so you can make a case for full compensation.
Let Our Kentucky Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Work For You
With years of combined experience in handling Kentucky motorcycle accident claims, Kaufman & Stigger, PLLC can give you the support and representation you need to make sure you’re able to recover from your injuries. Suffering a fracture of your neck bones in a motorcycle accident is certainly scary, but with our team on your side, you can focus on your physical recovery while we handle the legal side of things. Don’t hesitate to get the help you need, contact us today for a free consultation, and let us go to work for you.