On Tuesday night, March 30th, a Macon man riding his motorcycle crashed with a GMC Yukon SUV at Forsyth Road and Wesleyan Drive at 8:15 p.m. The intersection runs 3 ways and sits at the edge of the Wesleyan College campus. A well-traveled straightaway is also nearby.
The victim, Tyler Eason, 30, died at the hospital from his injuries, according to Bibb County officials. No details about how the crash occurred were provided. The Yukon driver was not injured.
This is the 5th motorcycle accident in Macon, Georgia in 3 weeks, raising increasing concern among residents.
Georgia motorcycle accident statistics are high
The first accident took place on March 11th in Twiggs County on Emery Highway and Womack Street. The motorcycle driver and passenger collided with another vehicle around 1:30 p.m. and died at the hospital from their injuries.
Fatal motorcycle accidents have continued to increase.
“Macon-Bibb County has averaged over four motorcycle fatalities a year over the past six years,” according to a local news report. “And they’ve already exceeded that in the month of March.”
7 most common causes of motorcycle accidents
Understanding the primary factors behind fatal motorcycle wrecks can help motorists and motorcyclists alike help avoid similar tragedies. Both motor vehicle drivers and motorcyclists can cause a fatal crash if they aren’t careful or responsible on the road.
1. Driving under the influence
Drivers and motorcyclists who drink alcohol or take prescription drugs before getting behind the wheel or handlebars increase the chances of losing control of their vehicle and crashing. In 2018, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that a third of all fatal crashes were caused by alcohol.
One of the leading causes of most accidents is exceeding the speed limit. Owners with high-performance motorbikes are 4 times more likely to be involved in a crash because they tend to go over the speed limit, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
The motorcyclist isn’t always the one speeding though. Another vehicle may crash into them because they don’t see the bike or are going too fast to slow down in time.
3. Rear-end collisions
This type of collision has the potential to cause fatalities and serious injuries, particularly for the motorcyclists. Often, rear-end crashes occur because one of the drivers wasn’t paying attention to the stopped vehicle or motorcycle in front of them.
4. Cut off in traffic
This is another type of accident that’s often caused because one driver wasn’t paying attention to the road around them. Such negligent behavior can cause a head-on collision with a motorcyclist or other motorist because it’s easy to misjudge another vehicle’s speed or not see the motorcycle.
5. Lane changes
As a motorcyclist, weaving in and out of traffic is considered reckless and almost a guaranteed way to cause an accident. In addition, lane splitting is illegal in Georgia, so motorcyclists should not attempt this maneuver.
For motor vehicle drivers, simply changing lanes can be dangerous because larger cars tend to have bigger blind spots so they might not be able to see a motorcyclist behind or beside them. That’s why it’s important for you to look twice before changing lanes.
6. Hitting gravel or debris
A motorcyclist driving late at night or coming around a blind curve might encounter gravel, sand or other slippery debris on the road. When the front tire hits the debris, it can cause a loss of control.
7. Bad weather
Rain, snow, ice, wet leaves, fog and other weather conditions can worsen road visibility and make it more difficult to see another vehicle or motorcycle.
As for the recent string of motorcycle tragedies around Macon, the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety attributes the sudden increase in motorcycle accidents to a combination of weather, increase in travel during spring break, and increase in overall traffic as COVID restrictions are lifted.
Motorcycle safety tips can help prevent accidents
- Plan your commute according to weather and traffic. Be aware that moisture lifts oils and debris to the road surface, which makes pavement more slippery. Avoid rainbow patches on the road. Pay closer attention to other vehicles on the road too, as visibility decreases for other drivers during bad weather.
- Increase the distance between yourself and other drivers, especially during bad weather or poor visibility. This added distance will help give you more time if the driver in front of you suddenly stops.
- Pay attention when turning left or when another vehicle is trying to make a left-hand turn. Check to see if there’s traffic in the other lane, which may prompt a vehicle to move over.
- Approach intersections with caution. Slow down before continuing. Watch for vehicles sitting still and note if they’re using their turn signal and which direction the wheels are turned in case you need to take evasive measures.
- Follow the rules. Regardless of how fast your motorcycle can go, always follow the posted speed limit and obey traffic signs. They are there for a reason.
If you’re injured in a motorcycle accident, consult with a Macon attorney
If you or someone you love is involved in a serious motorbike accident, our Georgia motorcycle accident attorneys want to talk to you about how to obtain the compensation you deserve to cover medical expenses and damages.
Don’t hesitate to contact the personal injury law firm of Westmoreland, Patterson, Moseley & Hinson to discuss your case. Schedule your free consultation at one of our offices conveniently located in Macon, Albany, and Warner Robins today.