On Tuesday, March 6, 2012, a motorcyclist was killed on I-65 in Louisville, Kentucky. It appears that the motorcyclist was travelling in the middle lane between a pickup truck and a tractor-trailer truck. According to Louisville police, the accident seems to have been caused when the driver of the pickup truck moved into the lane the motorcycle was in, causing the motorcycle to collide with the semi. Traffic on I-65 and the nearby ramps of the Watterson were closed for several hours and rush-hour traffic had to be diverted.
This horrific crash illustrates a few points of driver safety that bear repeating. First, riding a motorcycle can be fun and exhilarating, but it is inherently much more dangerous than driving a car. As a result, motorcyclists have to take extra precautions, especially when riding on a multi-lane highway. Motorcycles are smaller than cars or trucks and can be overlooked by other drivers on the road. Motorcycle riders have to be incredibly alert when riding to make up for other drivers possibly not seeing them. Proper gear should be worn at all times, including long pants, boots, a protective jacket and a helmet. The motorcyclist in this accident does not appear to have played any role in this accident, he was an innocent victim, and all of the above precautions still may not have saved his life.
Second, car and truck drivers need to always be alert when driving, paying attention to the road and those around them. It is even more important when travelling at higher speeds on a freeway or interstate. As noted above, motorcycles are smaller and may be harder to notice, especially in a rearview mirror. Any distraction may be enough to cause a driver to not see a motorcyclist, or another car driver, before it is too late. It is unknown whether the pickup truck driver in this wreck was distracted by the radio, a cellphone, or even a snack, or if distraction played no role in the accident.
Third, tractor-trailers are very large vehicles, especially when compared to motorcycles, and extra care needs to be taken when driving near them. More commercial truck accidents end in death than any other type of crash simply because of the sheer size and weight of these vehicles. Always allow plenty of room when driving near these big rigs and try not to get boxed in by more than one of them. Again, it was not the motorcyclist's fault that he was pushed into the semi in this case.
Our hearts go out to the family of the motorcyclist. While it may not be a priority at this time, it is important that they speak to a Kentucky car accident attorney to determine what insurance claims need to be filed and if a wrongful death case should be pursued. Monetary awards will not bring a loved one back, but it may help with funeral expenses and future financial stability. Charles Miller and Rheanne Falkner have years of experience in helping families through this type of difficult time.
Fatal accident on I-65; wave 3; Sarah Eisenmenger; March 6, 2012
Accident closes I-65 southbound near Grade Lane; WDRB; March 6, 2012