Los Angeles County enjoys warm, sunny weather year-round and also has one of the highest numbers of registered motorcycles in the country. With so many bikes on city streets, zipping by on the 101, or taking a leisurely trip up the coast on Highway 5, it’s not uncommon for them to be involved in a traffic collision.
Unfortunately, motorcycle drivers and their passengers often come off much worse for the wear after a collision with a car. Serious, sometimes life-changing injuries are common, even if the driver takes precautions like wearing a California-mandated helmet and leathers.
Before you fire up the bike, you should understand some of the possible injuries that can happen from a collision so you can take steps to drive more defensively.
1. Brain and Head Injuries
Even with a helmet, the chances of suffering a concussion after a wreck are high. When your head hits the ground or another hard surface, the brain collides with the inside of the skull, causing swelling, bleeding, and tearing of the tissue. Prompt medical attention can help alleviate the swelling or reduce the bleeding.
Concussions range from mild, with some confusion and lasting headaches, to severe, which may cause temporary or permanent vision loss, difficulty concentrating, memory problems, or even personality changes.
A concussion is a form of traumatic brain injury (TBI), and there isn’t really a cure. In the worst cases, the victim may be unable to live independently or may experience cognitive decline and require care in a special facility.
2. Broken Bones and Fractures
The same impact that damages the brain also damages your bones. Cracked ribs, broken legs or arms, or even crushed extremities are common after a motorcycle wreck. Hairline fractures may not be readily apparent and need an X-ray to diagnose, which is why a trip to the emergency room is so important after a collision.
Bad breaks, especially compound fractures, could require surgery to correct. Recovery often takes weeks or months, and some people may require physical therapy after the bone heals to regain their capabilities or range of motion.
3. Road Rash
Road rash is a colorful name for an avulsion, an injury where several layers of skin are peeled away. Exposed skin scrapes along the rough concrete or asphalt, removing multiple dermal layers.
Avulsions are rated by severity from mild, with just the top layer or two removed, to severe, where the skin and fat are scraped away, leaving exposed muscle or even bone.
Although the name is cute, the look of road rash is anything but. The more of your dermal layers involved and the larger the area they are peeled away from, the greater the chance of an infection. You may require a hospital stay, rounds of antibiotics, including IV antibiotics, and painful skin graft surgeries.
4. Internal Organ Damage
Motorcycle riders aren’t protected by airbags, so whatever part of their body is hit gets the full force of the impact. Liver and spleen damage are common; you may have to have part or the entire spleen removed or part of the liver.
A cracked rib could cause a punctured lung. Internal organ damage also causes internal bleeding, which could be dangerous or even deadly if you become septic.
Internal organ damage treatment often means surgery to repair the damage, and many people have long recovery times. You may permanently damage the organs, which could impact how you eat or what kinds of physical activity you can engage in.
Motorcycle Wreck Injuries Are Often Serious
If you or a loved one has been hit while riding a motorcycle, you already know just how painful and damaging collision injuries are.
If you didn’t cause the accident, you may be able to have the other driver pay for your extensive medical care by seeking representation from an experienced Los Angeles personal injury law firm like Saeedian Law Group. Get in touch with our experienced team today.