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Motorcycle accidents: More unpredictable than other vehicles

In New Hampshire and elsewhere, it may be said that motorcycle mishaps are just a bit more unpredictable and varied than other vehicular accidents. That may be due to the versatility and extra maneuverability of these smaller vehicles, which may allow for a greater variety of outcomes. Generally, the operator is in greater peril on the highway due to being fully exposed, which accounts for serious injuries and deaths in many motorcycle accidents.

One operator of a motorcycle was fortunate to survie an accident on Route 101 near exit 3 westbound, according to New Hampshire State Police. The cyclist  was driving behind an SUV that had a mattress tied to the roof. The mattress came loose and flew off the roof, striking the motorcycle.

When hit by the mattress, the 55-year old female operator lost control of her motorcycle and crashed. She suffered injuries and was transported to Eliot Hospital for treatment. Although not life-threatening, the injuries could turn out to be severe and permanent, depending on the circumstances and the severity of the injuries. It is often impossible to gauge the severity and extent of an injury immediately after the accident.

Such determinations must wait for the treating physicians to provide a diagnosis, and for the medical condition of the injured victim to be evaluated and treated. In this case, the accident could have happened with another car, but the car operator would be less exposed to the mattress and more likely able to maintain control than the cyclist. The fact that the cyclist lost control is not her fault.

New Hampshire law as well as most jurisdictions does not require that one make the best choice when confronted with an emergency, a rule that applies to motorcycle accidents as well as other vehicles. That rule covers the reactions of the cyclist and would rule out any claim that she could have maintained control of her motorcycle. The SUV driver is likely to be held totally responsible for causing the accident, and liable for damages, due to not having the mattress well-secured.

Source: nh1.com, "Police: Mattress fell off SUV, hit motorcyclist before causing crash on NH roadway", May 18, 2017

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