Image of a motorcycle in rainy parking lot

Experienced motorcyclists avoid riding in the rain because it is significantly less safe than riding in dry conditions. Whenever possible, riders should try to avoid taking out their motorcycle when the weather forecast calls for rain, but this is not always possible, and riders may still be caught in unexpected rainstorms.

It is common for motorists to wrongly blame motorcyclists for crashes, so it is vital to protect yourself against legal action. Talk to a South Carolina motorcycle crash attorney if you have been in a motorcycle accident that was not your fault. Though motorcyclists are often blamed for their role in crashes, Joye Law Firm can help you prove you weren’t at fault and get compensation for your medical bills.

Why is Riding in the Rain So Dangerous?

Riding your motorcycle in the rain is dangerous for many reasons. These are a couple of the most significant risks associated with driving in poor conditions.

Poor visibility

Visibility decreases for you and other drivers in rainy weather. Rain streaking down a motorcycle visor can impede vision, and cold temperatures can lead to your visor fogging. Decreased visibility combined with slick roads is a recipe for a crash.

Avoid visibility issues by treating your helmet with anti-fog solutions or visor inserts. Wear high-visibility clothes when riding in the rain to help other vehicles see you more easily.

Slippery roads

During rain, roads are slippery and more dangerous for all vehicles. Since motorcycles have fewer points of contact with the ground, they are at a higher risk of losing traction than cars. Operate your motorcycle smoothly during wet conditions and seek out dry lines to stay upright. Small throttle increments and early braking are other necessary riding adjustments during rainy weather.

Be extra attentive at the first signs of rain. Roads are most dangerous to ride on during the first hour of rain because the rain mixes with slippery substances on the road like oil and dirt.

When possible, the safest thing to do is wait out the rainstorm. If you cannot do that, pull over to put on appropriate gear like a waterproof jacket and gloves. It is easier to operate your motorcycle smoothly when you are dry and warm.

Motorcycle Crashes in the Rain

If you ride in the rain and get into a crash because of another person’s poor driving, you might be eligible for financial compensation for your motorcycle damage and injuries. To be eligible for compensation after a motorcycle crash, you will need to prove the following:

  1.  The at-fault motorist owed you the duty of care: When driving on public roads, all drivers owe each other a duty of care. This means drivers must operate their vehicles lawfully and safely. In the context of a motorcycle accident, all motorists must drive according to the same laws afforded to any other vehicle. For example, a motorcycle is entitled to a full lane just like any other vehicle. Motorists fulfilling their duty of care will not intrude into the motorcyclist’s lane.
  2. The at-fault driver did not fulfill their duty of care: If a motorist causes an accident because they failed to fulfill their duty of care, you may be due compensation. Examples of duty of care breaches include driving under the influence and speeding. In inclement weather, even driving at or under the speed limit can still be considered speeding if it is too fast for the road conditions, according to South Carolina law. If you are partially responsible for the crash, you may still receive compensation from the other responsible party as long as you are less than 51% responsible.
  3. The at-fault driver’s negligence caused you harm: The final step in proving you are due compensation is showing that the other driver’s actions caused you economic and non-economic harm. Economic harm can include medical bills, lost wages, or other expenses related to the accident. Non-economic harm is the pain, suffering, and emotional anguish caused by the accident. It is important to save all medical documents and other bills to prove the damages incurred.

Don’t Let Weather Stop You from Getting Compensation

While safety is compromised when riding a motorcycle in the rain, sometimes motorcyclists have no other choice. It is essential to ride smoothly, maintain your visibility, and be extra attentive whenever you need to ride in bad weather.

Unfortunately, you may do all of this and still get in a crash because of another motorist’s negligent driving, such as another vehicle hydroplaning and hitting your motorcycle. If this happens to you, contact an experienced attorney immediately.

The motorcycle crash attorneys at Joye Law Firm can fight for the financial and emotional compensation you deserve. Contact us today for more information and a no-obligation, free case consultation.

About the Author

Mark Joye is the Head of the Litigation Department at the Joye Law Firm. A Board-Certified Trial Advocate with nearly 30 years of litigation experience, he currently serves on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice and is a past president of the South Carolina Association for Justice. In a recent trial, Joye headed a trial team that secured $17 million for a family killed in a tractor-trailer accident.

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