Mopeds are a great way to get around. They are a low-cost alternative to cars, but have more power and involve less physical exertion than a bicycle. They also leave a smaller environmental footprint and are easier to park. For hundreds of thousands of Americans, a moped is the vehicle of choice for getting from A to B on a daily basis. However, they do come with some risks. Mopeds are not the most powerful or strongest vehicles on the road, which means that accidents can be especially dangerous for the driver. Here are some of the most common causes of moped accidents, and how you can stay safe.
When people think about accidents, they think about collisions. This is when two or more vehicles run into each other. Sometimes it’s at high speed, and other times it’s when a vehicle that’s moving hits a stationary one. If a moped is struck by a car, truck, or bigger vehicle, then the rider has very little protection and will most likely get seriously hurt or worse. Usually, when mopeds get hit it’s because drivers do not see or expect a moped to be where they are. This is especially common during left-hand turns. Drivers are looking for oncoming cars, and don’t see the smaller moped coming through. When driving a moped, you cannot control what others will do. What you can do is assume that no one can see you, and drive cautiously at a speed that allows you to stop or change directions quickly to avoid collisions. Do not speed with a moped, as the results could be disastrous.
Mopeds are smaller than other motorized vehicles, and too many riders think it gives them the ability to do certain things they shouldn’t. This includes dangerous acts like lane splitting. This is when a vehicle like a motorcycle or moped goes in between the cars in two lanes of traffic. Usually, this is when traffic is slow or stopped, but it might also be because the rider simply wants to move faster. If another vehicle pulls out in front of the moped, it will either be struck, or the moped will hit the vehicle, knocking the rider onto the road. Always remember that a moped is part of traffic in the same way that a car is. You have no right to split lanes, and you must follow all the rules of the road.
A lot of moped riders don’t realize how much road conditions can affect safety. In a car or a larger vehicle, you can ride over potholes and gravel and be just fine. However, with a smaller and lighter moped, a pothole can send you flying over the handlebars, and gravel can cause a wipeout. The same goes for rainy conditions. The road can be slick, but with only two small wheels touching the pavement, there is more of a chance for one to lose their grip. Make sure that you are always aware of the road on which you are riding. Slow down if it is bumpy or uneven, and be extra careful during and immediately after rainfall. What is fine in a car is not fine on a moped.
Alcohol and Drugs
You can be charged for driving a moped under the influence of alcohol and drugs. Not only that but it’s exceptionally dangerous. If you ride a bicycle while drunk or high, there’s a good chance you could get in an accident and hurt yourself or others. However, that danger is increased with a moped since it is heavier and faster. Do not think that just because it is a smaller vehicle than a car that it is safer. Alcohol, drugs, and mopeds do not mix.
When driving or riding in most motor vehicles, you have some protection from its structure. This is not the case with mopeds. If you get in an accident with a moped, you are very vulnerable. You can break your limbs and be seriously wounded, but the most common injury is trauma to the head. Even a slight knock at low speed can cause a concussion, brain damage, or even a fatal injury. Motorcycle and moped riders and cyclists are three times more likely to die if they are not wearing helmets. Besides, as of October of 2019, it is illegal in the state of Nevada to ride a moped without a helmet.
If you’ve gotten in an accident with your moped, first make sure you are safe and that you see to your injuries. Next, call Lloyd Baker Powerhouse Injury Attorneys at 702-444-2222 if in Las Vegas, NV, or 602-265-5555 if in Phoenix, AZ. We offer a free consultation, and we do not take a fee until you get paid.