(360) 718-3640
Personal Injury Lawyer
Vancouver & Southwest Washington

Vancouver WA Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Who Fights For Your Rights

Count on Colin to fight for the best possible outcome in your case

Motorcycles are a common sight in the state of Washington. But when other drivers are negligent, they can cause an accident that leave motorcyclists seriously injured. Injured victims may face months or years of recovering and mounting medical bills. The Scott Law Firm, PLLC helps injured motorcyclists recover the financial compensation they deserve.

Motorcycle accident attorney Colin Scott knows that part of the problem is that many drivers see motorcycles as little more than a nuisance on the road. Some drivers just don't see motorcycles as other vehicles - if they notice them at all. This attitude increases the risk of causing an accident.

A crash can change the lives of motorcyclists in an instant. Motorcyclists have very little protection, so the injuries they suffer can be severe. They may need surgery, hospitalization, medication, physical therapy or follow-up treatment. Some never fully recover from their injuries and are left with a permanent disability.

The medical expenses for treatment can become overwhelming very quickly. And if a motorcyclist is left unable to work, there is less income coming in. Meanwhile the usual bills don't stop piling up. This can be a very difficult time for motorcyclists and their families. Many find it hard to make ends meet.

Motorcyclists are up to five times more likely to be injured and 30 times more likely to be killed in a collision than occupants of vehicles. The majority of drivers who share the road with Washington's 230,000+ motorcyclists are unaware of these startling facts, but the numbers speak for themselves.

FAQs about riding motorcycles in Washington State

The following are some of the most frequently asked questions our law firm receives about riding a motorcycle in the State of Washington. You can find answers by clicking on the questions below:

Is an endorsement required to ride a motorcycle in Washington?

Motorcyclists in Washington State must have an endorsement on their license. If you operate a motorcycle without an endorsement, your motorcycle may be impounded. For additional information, see the Washington Department of Licensing Motorcycle Operator Manual.

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When do the majority of motorcycle crashes occur?

Studies conducted by the Washington State Traffic Safety Commission indicate the majority of motorcycle-related crashes occur during peak riding season (May through September) when traffic is heaviest (from 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.).

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What is the leading cause of death for motorcycle riders?

Despite roughly half of the states enacting mandatory helmet laws, head injuries are still the leading cause of motorcycle-related deaths, although such fatalities occur 10 times more frequently in states that do not have mandatory helmet laws. Other factors include inattentive drivers, poor weather conditions, equipment failure, speeding, dangerous roadways, and motorists who are under the influence of alcohol/drugs.

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Are helmets mandatory in Washington?

According to the law, everyone must wear a helmet while riding a motorcycle in the State of Washington. All helmets must be approved by the United States Department of Transportation (referred to as “DOT approved”).

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What does "DOT approved" mean?

Helmets that are DOT approved are certified by the manufacture as meeting standards set forth by the United States Department of Transportation. All DOT approved helmets must be clearly labeled with a sticker indicating the helmet is made to DOT specifications.

In order to help motorcyclists determine which helmets can be worn legally in the State of Washington, the Washington State Patrol publishes a “Bogus Helmet Brochure” that compares legal helmets with illegal (i.e. “bogus”) helmets. This brochure also contains additional information on how to properly identify whether your helmet is DOT approved.

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Is lane splitting legal in Washington?

According to the Washington State Legislature, lane splitting is illegal in the State of Washington. Specifically, the law states: “No person shall operate a motorcycle between lanes of traffic or between adjacent lines or rows of vehicles.”

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Can more than two riders occupy a single lane?

In Washington State, each motorcyclist is entitled to their own lane and two motorcyclists may ride next to each other. However, no more than two motorcyclists may ride next to each other in a single lane.

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Are motorcyclists required to use headlights during the day?

Motorcyclists in the State of Washington are required to use headlights at all times. Modulating headlights are permitted under the law.

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Driven, dedicated, determined representation

When an insurance company receives an injury claim that is legally justified, they are supposed to provide compensation for the injured plaintiff. But insurance companies often hold outdated views about motorcyclists. They think of them as dangerous risk takers. In their minds, a motorcyclist must have been to blame...somehow. They may dispute your version of events, claim that you were speeding or driving recklessly, and question the extent of your injuries.

Attorney Colin Scott is familiar with the defense strategies insurance companies use to deny personal injury claims. He knows that motorcyclists, like all people, care about their safety. That's why he doesn't put up with insurance company tactics that attempt to reduce the amount of compensation to which law-abiding citizens, including injured motorcyclists, are entitled.

Here at The Scott Law Firm, PLLC, we don't take the insurance company's word for what happened. We focus on the facts. Colin can investigate to find out what really happened. He can carefully review all relevant documentation - including police accident reports and medical records. He can identify witnesses and interview them himself. He can also consult with an accident reconstructionist and other specialists as needed to help prove your case.

Count on Colin in a crisis

Our firm knows how to build a strong case that insurance companies take seriously. When they see that Colin is prepared and ready to fight them in court, they often agree to enter into settlement negotiations. Their hope is we'll quickly agree to a lowball offer that helps them save money.

That's not acceptable. We are only interested in a resolution of your case that meets your individual needs. This can include compensation for all current and future medical expenses related to the motorcycle accident. It can also include compensation for lost wages as well as other damages like pain and suffering and any disability you have suffered as a result of the crash.

Colin is dedicated to getting the best possible outcome and recovering the compensation his clients need to get their lives back on track. Many times that can be done through a negotiated settlement with the insurance company. Other times, it may require filing a lawsuit and fighting for you in court.

Talk to an attorney right away. Call Colin.

If you've been injured in a motorcycle accident, it's important to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. The amount of time in which you have to take legal action against the parties responsible for your injuries is limited. If you wait too long, you risk losing your ability to seek financial recovery. Additionally, the longer you wait, the more likely it is that evidence will be lost or destroyed. The sooner we can get started, the sooner we can begin building a strong case that proves you are telling the truth.

Learn more about how we can help you with your case. Contact us online or call 360-718-3640 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced attorney. If you have difficulty traveling due to your injuries and can't come to our office, Colin can meet you at your home or another location that is more convenient for you.

Head and Brain Injuries

These are common and very serious injuries often seen in motorcycle accidents. Head and brain injuries can happen when a motorcyclist is hit directly by a vehicle or thrown onto the ground. The force of impact causes the brain to crash into the skull. This can result in bruising, bleeding or swelling - and motorcyclists can suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

The long-term effects of a TBI can have a significant impact on injury victims. They may experience problems with speech, thinking and motor skills. They may undergo personality changes. Other effects can include weakness and problems with balance or walking. Many victims of TBI require long-term or even lifelong care. In these situations, medical expenses can become overwhelming.

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Biker's Arm

During a motorcycle crash, the natural instinct of a motorcyclist is to use his or her arms for protection. The force of impact can result in damage to the nerves in the arm - including the brachial plexus, median nerve, radial nerve and ulnar nerve. This damage can lead to a condition known as "biker's arm."

Damage to the nerves can cause a loss of feeling and limited arm movement. Injured motorcyclists may have difficulty using their hands or fingers. Symptoms can take days or even weeks to develop. Treatment can help, but some injured motorcyclists never fully recover. In some cases, biker's arm can lead to permanent paralysis.

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Road Rash

In a motorcycle accident, a motorcyclist may slide on the road before coming to a stop. This contact with the road can result in result in serious cuts and bruises to the skin, a condition known as "road rash." If the injuries are severe enough, road rash may also be diagnosed as third-degree (full thickness) burns.

Like other types of burns, road rash can be extremely painful. If not properly treated, cuts and bruises can become irritated or infected. There may also be nerve damage or scarring. Severe road rash diagnosed as third-degree burns can also require surgical skin grafts. These injuries can take weeks or even months to fully heal. Medication, including powerful narcotics, are often needed in these situations to help with pain management.

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Broken Bones

The force of impact with a car or truck - or with the ground after being thrown from a bike - can easily lead to broken bones. These injuries are often seen in the arms, wrists, hands, legs and hips. Mobility becomes limited in the injured area. You may not be able to return to work or take part in your usual activities.

Depending on the location and type of fracture, it can take many months for a broken bone to heal completely. Surgery may be required in some cases-such as when a motorcyclist suffers a compound fracture. Comminuted fractures are also common injuries that can occur during a motorcycle accident, when bones are literally crushed and fragmented. In these situations, the injured motorcyclist may require one or more surgeries. In severe cases, a broken bone can result in disfigurement or permanent disability. Complications may also include infection and nerve damage. The effects from these type of injuries can be life-long.

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