Rules of the Road for Motorcycles

Motorcycles that use the roads across the Bronx, and the rest State of New York, must comply with the same rules of the road that apply to any other vehicle, and can be held responsible for a crash in the same manner as any other driver. By the same token, motorcyclists are entitled to the same respect and privileges as any other vehicle on the roadway, and drivers must respect motorcycles just as they would a car, truck or bus. Often, Bronx motorcycle accidents occur because other drivers do not respect the motorcyclist’s right to use the roads in the same way as any other vehicle. If you or a loved one are seriously injured in a motorcycle accident in the Bronx or elsewhere in New York City, contact our team of expert Bronx motorcycle accident lawyers today to learn about your rights to compensation, which may include pain and suffering, lost wages and income, lost benefits, and other types of damages.

What are the Rules of the Road For Motorcycles in the Bronx and New York City?

New York Vehicle and Traffic Law (also known as the “VTL”) Section 1250 is very clear in stating that “every person operating a motorcycle shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle.” This means that motorcyclists are subject to all of the same rules of the road to which other drivers must adhere, can be held liable for causing a New York City motorcycle accident in which someone else is injured, and also can sue other drivers for causing a Bronx motorcycle crash in which they are injured because of negligence. Unfortunately, motorcyclists themselves do not always follow these rules, nor do drivers of other vehicles always afford motorcycles the respect on the road that they deserve and that the law mandates. In large part due to drivers’ failure to obey the motorcycle safety laws, in 2014, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles reports that there were 142 fatal motorcycle crashes, 4055 non-fatal personal injury motorcycle accidents, and 553 motorcycle accidents causing property damage across the Bronx and the rest of New York State.

One of the most common causes of Bronx motorcycle accidents involves drivers’ failure to allow a motorcyclist the full use of a lane of traffic. As Rodney Dangerfield would say, motorcycles often get no respect at all. Even though motorcycles are smaller than cars, and thus do not take up as much space on the road as a larger vehicle, VTL Section 1252(a) is clear that “all motorcycles are entitled to full use of a lane, and no motor vehicle or motorcycle shall be driven in such a manner as to deprive any motorcycle of the full use of a lane.” Bronx motorcycle accidents often occur when a driver, seeing a motorcyclist in front of him or her, attempts to drive in the lane directly next to the motorcyclists, and pushes the motorcyclist to the side of the lane, into the next lane, or even off the road entirely. If you have been injured in a Bronx motorcycle crash caused by another driver’s negligence in failing to give you enough space on the roadway, our team of expert Bronx motorcycle accident lawyers will explain your rights and teach you how you can obtain compensation if you are seriously injured in a motorcycle accident.

Motorcycle crashes can also be caused by a motorcyclist’s negligence and failure to adhere to the rules of the road, resulting in serious injuries to the motorcyclist and other drivers or pedestrians on the road. In the Bronx and New York City, traffic is notoriously bad, and often motorcyclists will drive in an unsafe manner in an attempt to reach their destination more quickly and avoid being stuck in traffic. Some of these maneuvers include passing a vehicle ahead of it in the same lane (i.e., by squeezing ahead of another vehicle by using the side of the lane), or weaving between cars by driving on the dividing line between lanes. Both of these maneuvers are extremely dangerous and can cause serious car accidents and injuries to other drivers. For this reason, such unsafe driving practices are prohibited by Sections 1252(b) and 1252(c) of the VTL and can create liability for the motorcycle driver in a Bronx motorcycle accident.

Who is Responsible for a Bronx Motorcycle Crash?

As with pretty much every Bronx car accident or truck accident, pursuant to VTL Section 388, responsibility for any motorcycle accident occurring in the Bronx or elsewhere in New York City – and, indeed, anywhere in New York State – falls to the drivers, as well as the owners, of all vehicles involved in a crash. This means that, if you or a loved one are injured while riding on a motorcycle due to the negligence of another driver, you can obtain compensation not only from the driver of the other vehicle, but also from its owner even if the owner had nothing to do with causing the motorcycle accident. Conversely, if you are injured in a car accident because of the negligence of a motorcyclist, you may seek compensation from the owner and operator of the motorcycle in the same manner.

Furthermore, VTL Section 388 creates “joint and several” liability among all of the responsible parties in a Bronx motorcycle accident. This means that, no matter how small their degree of fault in causing an accident may be, every negligent driver in a Bronx motorcycle accident is responsible to pay the full amount of damages suffered by a victim of a motorcycle crash, even if another driver was primarily responsible for causing the accident. This rule permits injured victims of Bronx motorcycle accidents to access the full amount of all available insurance as compensation if they suffer a serious injury in a Bronx motorcycle accident.

If you suffer serious injuries, or a loved one is killed, in New York City motorcycle accident, our team of top Bronx motorcycle accident lawyers will explain your rights to you and help you obtain every penny of compensation that you need and deserve. Our firm chooses its cases carefully to ensure that every client whose case we accept receives the proper amount of care, attention and resources necessary to win in court. Our team is comprised of lawyers from Top 20 nationally ranked law schools, and our reputation as the smartest and best Bronx motorcycle lawyers is second to none. Our success rate in Bronx motorcycle accident lawsuits is over 95% because of our meticulous attention to detail and willingness to put our money on the line for you to ensure that your case has what it takes to win at trial and stand up on appeal. No matter how much we spend on expert witnesses and trial preparation in pursuit of justice for you and your family, we always offer our no-fee guarantee: You do not pay us a cent unless we win your case, no matter what. Call us at (718) 354-8000 to learn more, or to see if you have a good Bronx motorcycle accident case.

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