Unlike traditional motor vehicles, motorcycles offer their riders fuel efficiency, maneuverability, the ability to stop quickly, and the ability to swerve when suddenly necessary.1 However, just as motorcycle riders should be properly trained to stay safe, proper maintenance of your motorcycle is also key to ensuring your safety on the road. The most common motorcycle maintenance woes are those shared by motorcycles and cars alike, including running out of fuel, flat tires, and dead batteries. However, there are certain malfunctions unique to motorcycles that riders must be aware of in order to avoid a serious accident.
Common Causes of Motorcycle Malfunctions
The following are some of the most common causes of motorcycle malfunctions in Florida:
- Dirt, Debris, and Sand Accumulation: As a motorcycle has many exposed mechanisms, the accumulation of dirt and debris on the interior of the bike can cause the corrosion of certain essential components, which may cause your bike to breakdown on the road or run poorly;
- Lack of Chain Lubrication: Poorly lubricated chains can cause catastrophic bike failure because it may result in the chain snapping or locking unexpectedly. This could cause major engine damage in the middle of a busy road, leading to a fatal accident;
- Fuel System Failure: Because many motorcycles still use carburetors, if a fuel hose is not regularly replaced and maintained, it could cause fuel to leak from the gas tank and the fuel system to fail. This might result in a sudden accident coupled by fire resulting from the exposed fuel.
Maintaining your Motorcycle in Order to Avoid Accidents
Like cars, motorcycles require comprehensive annual inspections of the body, engine, and tires. They further require designated oil changes and brake pad maintenance. Maintenance unique to motorcycles includes monitoring the liquid coolant, which is essential during Florida’s hot summer weather, and regularly changing the “fork oil,” which acts as a type of shock and helps the bike absorb irregularities in the road.
If you are involved in a motorcycle accident, keeping records of proper maintenance may be essential to your case. A qualified personal injury attorney with experience in motorcycle litigation can help you defend against allegations of negligent maintenance, which may shift liability in the case from you as a rider to either the motorcycle manufacture or maintenance technician. For example, if your bike chain snaps causing an accident, proof of proper maintenance may point liability in the direction of the manufacturer, designer, or installer of the part.
Contact an Experienced Clearwater Motorcycle Accident Lawyer for Maintenance Related Accidents
If you have been involved in a motorcycle accident related to a mechanical malfunction but believe you have property maintained your bike, be sure to contact a qualified Florida law firm that understands the ins-and-outs of motorcycle maintenance. They may be able to help either reduce or eliminate your liability. Contact the Dolman Law Group, your premier motorcycle accident firm in the Clearwater area, today at 727-451-6900 for a no-risk consultation. With experience handling motorcyclist liability, they will advocate on behalf of your rights as a responsible rider.