This past Wednesday, 40-year-old Amir Abukhdeir passed away in Tampa from a fatal motorcycle crash on Fletcher Ave. While traveling westbound, Abukhdeir crashed his 2000 Yamaha Road Star into the passenger side of 27-year-old William James Croom’s vehicle. Croom, the driver of a 1998 Ford Taurus, failed to see Abukhdeir and according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office was in the process of making a left turn onto 42nd street when he pulled out directly in front of the motorcyclist. After the collision, Abukhdeir, who had been wearing a helmet, was rushed to the hospital where he died. Croom and a passenger suffered non-life threatening injuries and it has yet to be determined if charges will be filed.
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to experience a deadly accident on the road than those in passenger cars. Despite various efforts to raise awareness and safety for these drivers, The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also reported that from 2010 to 2011 the percentage of motorcyclists killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes actually increased by 2 percent. The reality is that with these numbers increasing and with the amount of motorcyclists steadily rising as well, this has become a growing public concern.
In efforts to increase motorcycle safety, 19 states have adopted a universal helmet law and 28 have at the very least implemented a partial helmet law, which requires drivers of a certain age to wear a helmet. Based on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, motorcycle drivers should always wear a DOT-approved helmet, they should never operate a motorcycle after they have been drinking alcohol, they should wear protective clothing that provides some level of injury protection, they should avoid tailgating, and they should maintain a safe speed.
However, in many cases, even a responsible motorcyclist could become injured because of the fault of another vehicle. The Motorcycle Foundation has said that over half of motorcycle accidents involve another vehicle, and most of the time the motorist and not the motorcyclist, is at fault. Therefore, what precautions can the rest of us take? The Motorcycle Foundation advises that motorists take small steps to prevent these accidents from occurring. As non-motorcycle drivers, we can take an extra moment to check our blind spots when changing lanes or turning, we can allow for more space when following a motorcycle, and we should never assume that a motorcycle will make a turn based on their traffic signals. In addition, as responsible drivers, we can make sure to limit the amount of distractions while driving, we can remember to use proper directional signals, and we should follow other general rules of the road.
Whether a motorist or a motorcyclist, there are a number of precautions we can take to try and prevent these tragic avoidable motorcycle fatalities. These simple tips can lead to safer driving habits for all drivers, regardless of the type of conveyance.
As the holidays approach, Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA reminds everyone to drive safely and cautiously. Remember to look twice to save a life and if you are operating a motorcycle to wear a helmet. If a loved one or friend is unfortunately injured in a motorcycle crash, your Clearwater injury lawyers are always available to assist. Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA is a Personal Injury and Civil Trial Firm representing victims throughout the state of Florida. Call for a free consultation and case evaluation, 727-451-6900.