Catastrophic Injuries

New York & New Jersey Catastrophic Injury Lawyer & Attorney

Are You a Victim of a Catastrophic Injury in New York or New Jersey?

The New York & New Jersey spinal cord injury and brain injury lawyers at Robert A. Solomon, P.C. have extensive experience in gauging the full costs of current and future needs for victims of catastrophic injuries. We have obtained substantial settlements and jury verdicts in personal injury litigation and negotiation for clients.

We consult with top medical experts and planners to develop a life care plan for victims of spine injury, head injury, severe burns, vision loss, lost limbs, paralysis, and all forms of major, life-changing injury. We account for future medical treatment and personal care, medical equipment and transportation, loss of income potential, and compensatory damages for loss of enjoyment. Our spinal cord injury attorneys work closely with victims and their doctors to ensure that they receive only the total compensation required for a lifelong injury.

Catastrophic Injuries - An Overview

A catastrophic injury or illness usually occurs suddenly and without warning. Injuries that are considered catastrophic (due to the enormous impact they have on the lives of the individuals who experience them) include the following: brain injury, spinal cord injury, amputation, severe burns, multiple fractures, or other, neurological disorders. A catastrophic injury or illness very often causes severe disruption to the central nervous system, which in turn affects many other systems of the body. In addition to possible loss of movement, sensation, and communicative and cognitive abilities, the injury or illness may impact respiration, circulation, skin, the urinary system, the gastrointestinal system, and other body systems. Management of such an injury is complex and may require the expertise of a team of health professionals including physicians, consultants, nurses, therapists, and counselors. Clearly, the long-term needs of someone who has experienced this type of injury far surpass those of individuals with less severe injuries. Individuals may recover from some catastrophic injuries if they receive proper, early medical treatment; however, others may experience permanent disability, significant suffering, and reduced life spans. If you or your loved one has suffered catastrophic injuries as the result of an accident, consult an attorney to learn your rights to compensation. A lawyer experienced in catastrophic injury litigation can help you learn what your rights are.

If a catastrophic injury was caused by the negligent or intentional act of another, or by a dangerous or defective product, a personal injury claim by the victim will be an integral factor in his or her future quality of life, including the quality of the medical care and other support he or she will receive. Because of the huge financial impact a catastrophic injury has, one of the most important aspects of bringing a personal injury claim is the determination of the value of such a claim. A person whose earning capacity has been substantially reduced and who is likely facing a lifetime of care requires an experienced attorney, with specialized knowledge of his or her particular type of injury, to ensure that the injured person obtains all of the financial support he or she will need, possibly for decades to come.

The long-term implications of many catastrophic injuries do not surface or become apparent until years after the original injury. For example, individuals who are injured as children may experience changes in their abilities/disabilities as they grow, requiring surgeries or other medical intervention to accommodate their growth. Similarly, a burn victim might continue to undergo reconstructive surgeries for many years after the original injury. Thus, an attorney who understands the long-term implications of such injuries will be better able to ensure that victims receive just compensation and sufficient resources for the future.

Compensation Issues

Often only a small amount of insurance is available to compensate a catastrophically injured person, and it becomes necessary to seek alternative compensation or government assistance. This is one of the most important reasons for retaining an attorney with significant experience handling catastrophic injury claims. For instance, some of the worst, most dangerous drivers often carry the least amount of insurance allowed by law, or carry no insurance at all. In such cases, an injured party might be limited to recovering only up to the limits of his or her uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage benefits, which typically will fall far below the losses sustained. Also, contrary to popular belief, huge jury verdicts are rare, and most injury victims are under-compensated for their injuries. For these reasons, it is important to seek the assistance of an attorney who has experience with catastrophic injury cases; he or she will consider and know how to reach every possible source of recovery in a personal injury claim. Additionally, even if your attorney determines you do not have a legal cause of action against a responsible party, he or she might assist you in obtaining government benefits, which can be a daunting task for those not trained in the law. The following are examples of how an experienced attorney can help locate and pursue recovery from responsible individuals.

Burn Scenario

There is often inadequate insurance coverage to properly compensate burn victims for their injuries. For example, assume two cars are involved in a serious accident that causes both vehicles to burn beyond recognition, and both drivers to suffer burns over 75% of their bodies. An inexperienced attorney may conclude that all either driver is entitled to is the amount of each driver's automobile insurance, typically $20,000 to $100,000. An experienced attorney, however, will have the knowledge and resources to investigate the accident and fire, and may discover vehicle defects, road defects, additional insurance, or assets hidden by parties responsible for the accident, all of which could result in a far greater recovery. Moreover, an experienced attorney will be better prepared to maximize the benefits to which a burn victim is entitled under his or her own insurance policies.

Brain Injury Scenario

The force necessary to suffer a brain injury can be sustained in several types of accidents, including car accidents, sports-related incidents, and workplace accidents. Assume a worker is painting on a scaffold when the platform gives way, causing a violent fall and serious closed head injury. Some attorneys may see this solely as a workers' compensation claim, which will limit the victim's recovery as a matter of law because, in most states, an injured worker cannot file suit against his or her employer. An experienced attorney, however, will consider additional theories of liability and defendants. For example, if the scaffolding were manufactured improperly, a product liability case may be brought against the manufacturer, which could result in a large recovery. Also, many worksites have multiple contractors, responsible for different aspects of a project; therefore, an investigation should be conducted into the involvement of others in installing and maintaining the scaffold. Finally, experienced attorneys will always closely examine emergency technician and medical records to determine whether the medical care given to an injured individual was proper.

Childhood Fractures

Bone fractures sustained during childhood can affect growth plates, requiring difficult bone-stretching procedures long after the fractures have healed, and possibly permanently impairing normal use of one or more limbs. Such an outcome might not even be considered by an attorney representing a child at or near the time of injury. Yet, an experienced attorney will anticipate such future problems, and ensure that the injured individual is financially protected.

Drunk-Driving Accident

Another example might be where a driver is broadsided by a drunk driver who has no liability insurance. An inexperienced attorney may advise his client that his or her recovery is limited to his or her own uninsured motorist benefits. An experienced attorney, however, will quickly determine where the drunk driver was drinking prior to the accident, and preserve a case against other potential defendants, including a bar, restaurant or homeowner who served the driver alcohol knowing he was already intoxicated. In addition, a product liability claim may exist against one of the car's manufacturers if some defect in one of the cars contributed to the accident. Such claims are not inexpensive to litigate and, therefore, less accomplished attorneys might not even consider them.

Finally, many states maintain a catastrophic claim fund that makes money available to victims of catastrophic injuries who are not adequately compensated by other sources. Some attorneys may not even know about such a fund, and may overlook that as a source of recovery completely.

Determining Future Costs of Care & the Damages to Which a Catastrophically Injured Person is Entitled

Whether a person falls from a construction platform and injures his spine, catches her hand in a piece of machinery, or is born with a birth defect that impairs his or her mobility, he or she will likely need financial assistance in treating the injury and continuing on with life. In today's society, within the systems established to provide for injured individuals, the medical evaluation of the degree of an individual's impairment can have a huge impact on the level of compensation the individual will receive, from all sources. Other issues such a medical evaluation will evaluate include:

  • The injured person's ability to work;
  • The right to receive different kinds of economic compensation;
  • Eligibility for protection against discrimination;
  • Whether independent living is possible;
  • What type of physical therapy might improve his/her health.

Significantly, such an evaluation should include the significant changes an individual will undergo as he/she progresses through acute hospitalization, then returns to the home and community. An individual will likely experience the best possible outcome with rehabilitation that offers an interdisciplinary approach and coordinated care.

Life Care Planning

Life care planning is the process of analyzing the medical and medically-related goods and services an individual will need because of a disabling injury or disease. A systematic and logical approach is utilized to trace all of the needs relating from the disability to the end of one's life expectancy. Various experts within the field of rehabilitation and case management are often asked to develop life care plans, in consultation with medical and therapeutic specialists according to their clinical specialties. All past medical, social, psychological, vocational, educational, and rehabilitation data are taken into consideration to the extent that it is available and applicable. The goals and desires of the patient and family are expressed in the plan. Medical literature is surveyed to reflect current concepts of patient care management. Consideration is given to changes in a patient's needs due to aging and the progression of his or her disability.

The life care plan provides for services that are needed to prevent or significantly reduce known complications over time. Potential complications associated with the principle diagnoses are discussed, and the care needs related to these complications are projected. The range of services in the geographic area or region, and prevailing costs and standards are utilized to provide an analysis of costs. These costs are typically expressed as present day costs derived from the best available data and resources.

Through the life care plan process, a template for current and future care is developed. The plan serves as a guide for family members, case managers and health care providers. It is not a prescription for care, but represents a logical blueprint for an individual's anticipated needs and to provide optimal outcomes, based upon reasonable medical probability and current concepts of care. An individual's life care plan may be utilized by his or her attorney in seeking compensation for his or her injuries, and may also call for consultation with financial professionals to select appropriate investment strategies to preserve resources over the patient's life.

Who Is Responsible?

Determining who is responsible for catastrophic injuries can be difficult. There typically is one party directly involved at the scene. However, there may be several other less obvious parties whose conduct played a role in causing your injuries. Catastrophic injuries usually cause the victim to suffer extensive monetary damages. It is important to identify everyone who may be responsible so that complete justice may be done. An attorney experienced in handling catastrophic injury cases knows how to investigate the facts of a case and to learn the identities of every responsible party.

Any party who bears possible liability for your injuries should be investigated as to their role. Every case is different, and the exact identities of the responsible parties will depend on the facts of your particular case.

Employers? The employer of a person who injures you is liable for your injuries if you are injured while the employee is acting within the scope of his or her employment. For example, if you are injured by the driver if a delivery vehicle, you may be able to hold the driver's employer liable. It is important to remember that an employer is liable only for injuries caused by an employee who is "on duty." An employer is generally not liable for injuries caused by off-duty employees, or by employees who are disobeying company rules at the time of the injury.

Vehicle Owners? In many states, the owner of a vehicle is liable for injuries caused by the operation of that vehicle. Some state laws provide that this extension of liability includes car rental or leasing companies.

Manufacturers or Sellers of Products? Defective products may contribute to a catastrophic injury. Some products are considered defective because they are incapable of being made safe or of being used safely. Other products are considered defective if they are improperly designed or manufactured. Some products are defective because they are marketed in such a way as to lead a user to misuse the product. If the defect contributed to you injury, the manufacturer or seller of the product could be held liable.

Medical Personnel? Improper diagnosis or treatment of injuries can make your injuries even worse. The medical professionals who aggravate an injury by substandard work may be held legally responsible for a portion of your losses.

Specific Types of Catastrophic Injuries

What follows is a brief discussion of some of the more common, devastating, injuries that necessitate the expertise of an attorney, knowledgeable in catastrophic injury claims, to obtain adequate financial compensation for the injured individual. If you or your loved one has suffered catastrophic injuries as the result of an accident, consult an attorney to learn your rights to compensation. A lawyer experienced in catastrophic injury litigation can help you learn what your rights are.

Severe Burn Injuries

Burns are some of the most expensive injuries to treat. For example, a burn that covers 30% of the body can cost approximately $200,000 to treat. Additional fees are incurred for later surgical reconstruction and treatment. Recent statistics show that at least 50% of all burn accidents could have been prevented. This means that most burns are caused by the fault of something or someone, often not the victim. On average, 2.4 million burn injuries are reported every year. 75,000 of those injuries are of such a severe nature as to require hospitalization. Of the victims hospitalized, approximately 20,000 have first-degree burns covering 25% of their total body surface. Approximately 12,000 burn victims die, and one million are temporarily disabled.

A major complication of severe burns is that they impair other vital systems of the body; this in turn makes victims susceptible to complications, including organ failure, limited use of limbs and severe restriction of the musculature system. Reconstructive surgery can also result in serious complications.

Many complications do not manifest themselves for years after the original injury, making it much harder for victims to accept and, for attorneys, to recover appropriate compensation for them. Therefore, one must be careful to retain an attorney who has extensive experience representing burn victims, since such an attorney will be familiar with the long-term complications of burn injuries, and will ensure that an injured person receives the compensation he or she needs, both for the present and the future.

Brain Injuries

Every year in America, nearly 100,000 people suffer brain injuries that permanently affect their ability to work and do the simple tasks necessary for daily living. Surprisingly, one does not have to be traveling at a high rate of speed or have one's head strike an object, such as a steering wheel or windshield, to suffer a traumatic brain injury. Mild brain injuries can be caused by falls, car accidents or sport-related activities. Trauma to the head or neck region can cause the brain to bruise, bleed, tear, and/or swell. There are two general types of head injuries, open or closed. An open injury means the skull has been fractured, while a closed head injury does not involve a fracture. Both types of brain injury can cause paralysis, loss of vital body functions and death.

In the event of a head-on car collision, involving two cars traveling at 45 miles per hour, the "soft" tissue of the brain is forced against the hard bone of the skull. The human skull has ridges, which normally do not come into contact with the brain. The force of an accident can cause blood vessels to tear, releasing blood into areas of the brain or skull that are not able to accommodate such blood. This causes an increase in pressure that causes the brain to press against the skull, causing impaired brain function or the death of brain cells. If enough blood leaks into the brain cavity, areas of the brain that control breathing or cardiac function, a minor injury could become fatal within a very short period of time. Remarkably, it is possible to suffer from such an injury and feel fine. Some victims have suffered such an injury in an automobile accident, yet been able to get out of their car and direct traffic away from the scene! Therefore, if there is any question at all whether a brain injury could have occurred, it is critical to go to the nearest hospital.

Bruising of the brain is also a common injury in automobile accidents, falls, and sport-related accidents. The impact in such occurrences can force the brain forward and then backward, or vice versa. The force can cause bruising in some areas and bleeding in others.

Another common effect of trauma to the brain is called tearing. The force of a collision can cause tearing. Tearing is similar to what happens if a block of ice were to be struck with a hammer; small cracks form, yet the block remains intact. The nerve system of the brain is usually damaged and, depending on the areas in which this occurs, can cause serious impairment of bodily functions. Significantly, this injury may not manifest itself immediately.

When the brain suffers the type of trauma described above, swelling usually occurs. The body's natural healing processes cause swelling. The problem with swelling of the brain is that there is no room for the brain to migrate. What results is called intra-cranial pressure, which can be deadly or cause severe impairment of body functions.

One can sustain the force necessary to suffer a brain injury in several types of accidents, including car accidents, sport-related occurrences, and work related accidents. Because there may be a gap in time between a traumatic physical event and a victim experiencing physical symptoms resulting from that trauma, the importance of hiring an attorney experienced in brain injury cases, who can tie the injury to its original cause, cannot be overemphasized.

Spinal Cord Injuries

A spinal cord injury can be one of the most devastating events in life, both for the individual experiencing it and his/her family and friends. Spinal cord injuries impose a tremendous burden on both the affected individuals and society at large, with costs that are staggering. The quality of life for individuals with spinal cord injuries has greatly improved in the last 60 years. This has been especially true in the last two decades. Statistical data published by the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center reflects continuing improvements in life expectancy and a reduction in the severity and occurrence rates of life threatening spinal cord injury complications. Improvements in standards of care, adaptive equipment, environmental modification, and legislation benefiting the disabled, have enhanced and enriched the lives of many injured individuals and their families.

The type of activity giving rise to spinal cord injuries varies by age, with sport-related spinal cord injuries more common in children and teenagers, while work-related spinal cord injuries (especially from construction work) predominate in adults. According to data from the National Spinal Cord Injury Association (NSCIA), the most common causes of traumatic injury to the spinal cord are:

  • Motor vehicle accidents (44%)
  • Acts of deliberate violence (24%)
  • Falls (22%)
  • Sports (8%; two thirds of which are from diving)
  • All other causes (2%)

When someone suffers a severe spinal cord injury resulting in paralysis or serious impairment of other body functions, it is very difficult to accept the notion that there is no cure. One of the primary reasons there is no "cure" is because central nerves, damaged in such injuries, do not grow back or regenerate.

Another reason spinal cord injuries are so often irreversible is because the spinal cord is one of the most complex parts of the human body. The spinal cord makes up the majority of the body's most specialized system, the central nervous system. The central nervous system consists mainly of the brain and the spinal cord. The spinal cord carries messages to and from all parts of the body and the brain. Therefore, any impairment of its ability to function will have a profound effect on the body. A spinal cord injury can lead to any of the following:

  • problems with the respiratory system;
  • cardiovascular complications;
  • urinary tract complications;
  • gastrointestinal complications;
  • metabolic changes;
  • neurological disorders;
  • sexual dysfunction; and
  • psychosocial and vocational issues.

Unfortunately, the problem posed by how our central nervous system responds to an injury is complex. Many breakthroughs occur each year, yet they are merely building blocks to a cure for problems created by a spinal cord injury.

The aftermath of spinal cord injury often results in restrictions of role fulfillment as a worker, student, parent, spouse, citizen, or other status. Sometimes these disadvantages are not due so much to the disability as to societal reactions to disability. The person with a spinal cord injury has to cope not just with a changed body image, new ways of doing things, and increased reliance on others for daily activities, but also with changes in his or her social roles and interactions.

Due to the severe and permanent nature of a spinal cord injury, in bringing a claim for such an injury based on the fault or wrongdoing of another, it is imperative to retain the services of an accomplished attorney and competent physician. While these professionals may not be able to alleviate an individual's pain or loss of body functioning, they can obtain the optimal financial recovery to which an injured individual may be entitled, and access to the most current medical advances. An attorney experienced in handling catastrophic injury cases will know how to uncover all of the parties who may be responsible for your injuries.

Informed Consent in Cases of Medical Malpractice

If you were injured as the result of a medical procedure or medication, the concept of informed consent will likely arise in any claim for your injuries that you bring against a medical professional. In many situations where medical care or treatment is provided to an individual, medical professionals are required to obtain the patient's "informed consent." Although the specific definition of informed consent may vary from state to state, it means essentially that a physician (or other medical provider) must advise a patient of all of the potential benefits, risks, and alternatives involved in any surgical procedure, medical procedure, or other course of treatment, and must obtain the patient's written consent to proceed. If you or your loved one has suffered catastrophic injuries as the result of a medical procedure or medication, consult an attorney to learn your rights to compensation. A lawyer experienced in catastrophic injury litigation can help you learn what your rights are.

The concept of informed consent is based on the principle that a patient has the right to prevent unauthorized contact with his or her body and, thus, a physician has a duty to disclose information to the patient so that he or she can make a reasoned decision regarding treatment, based on an understanding of the treatment to be provided. In many situations, the failure to obtain informed consent is a form of medical negligence, and may even give rise to a cause of action for battery. In certain situations, informed consent is an absolute necessity. For example, in any medical trials or experiments that receive federal funding, informed consent must be obtained from any human participant or subject.

The Role of the Physician

Physicians themselves, rather than a representative, nurse, or other related health care professional, are the best choice to speak to patients about informed consent. In discussing the matter with a patient, the physician should cover:

  • The patient's diagnosis, if it is known;
  • The nature and purpose of the proposed treatment or procedure, as well as the procedure's likelihood of success;
  • The benefits and risks of the proposed treatment or procedure;
  • The alternatives to the proposed treatment or procedure;
  • Alternatives to the treatment or procedure should be discussed regardless of their cost and regardless of whether they will likely be covered by the patient's health insurance;
  • The risks and benefits of an alternative treatment or procedure;
  • The risks and benefits of not receiving or undergoing any treatment or procedure.

A physician should also ensure that patients understand what they're hearing. In fact, some hospitals now require physicians to participate in courses on communication skills. The patient, or the patient's legally authorized representative consenting to the treatment on the patient's behalf, must sign and date the informed consent documents, and must be given a copy of the informed consent documents once they are signed and dated. A copy of those documents should also be placed in the patient's file.

The Role of the Patient

Although a physician is required to inform a patient about benefits, risks, and alternative treatments, patients must also play a part in the informed consent process. Patients must listen to the physician and should ask questions of the physician if they do not understand, or if they would like more detailed information.

Types of Consent: Express and Implied

Informed consent may be either "express" or "implied." Express consent is given in writing or verbally. If a patient's consent is written, it should include the name of the health care professional who discussed the proposed treatment with the patient, the name of the health care provider who is to perform the procedure, and the date, time and location where the consent form was signed.

Implied consent is consent that is not given by a patient in writing or verbally, but understood from the circumstances surrounding the procedure or treatment at issue. Consent may be implied when, for instance, a patient presents him or herself for a relatively simple, non-invasive procedure. Consent is also usually implied for necessary procedures a surgeon might perform in the course of a surgical procedure to which the patient did consent.

Situations in Which Informed Consent May not be Necessary or May be Implied

  • Situations Not Involving Medical Procedures or Treatment. Not all situations require that informed consent be given. For example, although listening to a heartbeat through a stethoscope may be considered a "treatment" or "procedure," to some people (especially those who are uncomfortable in physician's offices), it's rare that a physician and patient would have a lengthy discussion about the benefits and risks of listening to a heartbeat using that device.
  • Emergency Situations: In emergency situations, there is not always time to obtain a patient's informed consent, or the patient may be unconscious and unable to communicate. If an emergency involves risk to the patient's life or the patient is unable to communicate, consent may be implied under the rationale that the patient would have consented to emergency treatment.

Obtaining Consent from Incompetent Individuals and Minors

When a competent adult seeks medical treatment, the process of obtaining informed consent may seem relatively easy. However, in situations where mentally disabled individuals or children need treatment, the ability to obtain informed consent becomes more difficult. In these situations, serious questions arise concerning who is able to give informed consent for those individuals.

In most cases, a mentally disabled person has an appointed guardian authorized to make medical decisions and give informed consent for that individual. Medical providers need to make sure that when they obtain informed consent for incompetent individuals, they have obtained it from the correct person or persons.

In most situations, parents can give informed consent for treatment for their minor children. However, some states allow young adults under eighteen to play a more active role in their medical care and treatment, including the process of informed consent. Not every teenager is capable, however, of making informed consent decisions under these laws. Instead, most states focus on "mature minors" sufficiently ready to understand the nature and consequences of treatment. In those states, such young adults may be able to provide consent without consulting with their parents. For example, some states have passed specific laws that allow for minors to consent, without parental knowledge or approval, to health care treatments related to substance abuse, mental health, and sexual activity.

An attorney experienced in handling catastrophic injury cases will know how to uncover all of the parties who may be responsible for your injuries.

Motorcycle Accidents: Protective Equipment

The best way to avoid litigation for the devastating injuries that can result from a motorcycle accident is to never be injured in a motorcycle accident in the first place. Easier said than done? Well, the bad news is that motorcycle riders involved in accidents face a much greater risk of injury than automobile drivers, and motorcycle riders can never be kept completely safe from injury in an accident. The good news is that developments in protective equipment can make motorcycle riders much safer than in the past, provided they take advantage of those developments. If you or your loved one has suffered catastrophic injuries as the result of a motorcycle accident, consult an attorney to learn your rights to compensation. A lawyer experienced in motorcycle accident litigation can help you learn what your rights are.

Protective clothing and equipment for motorcycle riders serve a number of purposes:

  • Injury protection;
  • Protection from the elements, such as wind, rain, and sun;
  • Visibility to other motorists, through the use of color or reflective material.

Helmets

Clearly the most important piece of motorcycle equipment, safety helmets save lives by reducing the extent of head injuries in the event of a crash. Un-helmeted injured motorcyclists are three times as likely to suffer a brain injury as helmeted injured motorcyclists. Your helmet should fit comfortably and snugly, and be fastened at all times when riding. When shopping for a helmet, look for a Department of Transportation label on the helmet (it will read "DOT"), which is the manufacturer's certification that the helmet conforms to federal safety standards.

Gloves

Durable, non-slip gloves, made of leather or special fabric with grip strips, allow a motorcycle rider to keep a firm grip on the handlebars and controls. Gloves can also serve to keep air out of a rider's sleeves, and reduce cuts and abrasions in the event of a fall. You can find appropriate gloves for any type of riding weather.

Footwear

Proper footwear is essential to protect a motorcycle rider's feet, ankles, and lower legs. Leather boots are the best choice, but durable athletic shoes that cover the ankles are good as well. Riders should avoid sandals and sneakers, which provide little protection to the feet and ankles. No matter what footwear you choose, avoid dangling laces that can get in the way.

Bright Clothing & Reflective Material

Many car-versus-motorcycle crashes happen because the car driver failed to see the motorcycle in time to avoid the crash. To ensure greater visibility to other motorists, a motorcycle rider's clothing, especially the upper body clothing, should be brightly colored. Some riders wear lightweight reflective orange or yellow vests over their jackets, which make them much more conspicuous on the road, especially at night. Reflective material can also be applied to the helmet and the motorcycle itself.

Eye Protection

Since most motorcycles don't have windshields, riders must protect their eyes against insects, dirt, rocks, or other airborne materials. Even the wind can cause the eyes to tear and can blur vision, which is dangerous. Good vision is imperative when riding. Choose good quality goggles, glasses with plastic or safety lenses, or a helmet equipped with a face shield. Goggles, glasses, and face shields should be scratch free, shatter proof, and well ventilated to prevent fog buildup. Only clear shields should be used at night, since tinted shields reduce contrast and make it more difficult to see. Even if your motorcycle has a windshield, eye protection is recommended.

Armor And Protective Clothing

The most frequent injury suffered by motorcyclists in an accident is abrasion, often called "road rash." A wide range of apparel provides protection from abrasion, including some very effective synthetic materials that have been offered in recent years. Some types of impact resistant material, or armor, are being incorporated into jackets, suits and even gloves and boots. Armor is designed to protect the motorcyclist against everything from bruising and fractures of the extremities, avert life-threatening injuries to the torso, and reduce spinal injuries. Leather, which is used in garments to cover virtually all of a motorcyclist's body, can also be effective in preventing the serious deep abrasions that can result from contact with the road.

Airbags

Strange as it may sound, an airbag for motorcycles may find its way into the marketplace soon, whether installed on the bike itself or as a vest, worn by the rider or passenger, which inflates upon impact. An attorney experienced in handling motorcycle accident and catastrophic injury cases will know how to uncover all of the parties who may be responsible for your injuries.