SMIDSY Crashes in the Sunshine State

Posted on

In some parts of the world, left-turn motorcycle wrecks, which are very common in Florida, are called SMIDSY crashes, for “sorry, mate, I didn’t see you.” This phrase captures not only the way the accident occurred, but also the cavalier attitude that many of these drivers have in the wake of the accident.

Frequently, a tortfeasor (negligent driver) is waiting to make an unprotected left turn against traffic. The tortfeasors see (or think they see) a gap in traffic, so they quickly accelerate to shoot through the gap. But they do not see an approaching motorcycle. As a result, they turn directly into the rider’s path.

In the movies, stunt riders get right back up after such an accident. But the real world is much different. Because of the serious and often fatal injuries that these riders sustain, an Orlando motorcycle accident lawyer is often able to obtain substantial compensation for these victims. More on that below.

Establishing Liability

Under Florida law, left-turn motorcycle wrecks could involve the negligence per se rule or the ordinary negligence doctrine.

Motorcycles clearly have the right-of-way in these situations. Tortfeasors who violate safety laws, like failure to yield the right-of-way, and cause crashes are presumptively liable for damages in Florida.

Unfortunately, emergency responders often do not issue such citations. If the rider was killed or seriously injured, the reporting officer only hears the tortfeasor’s side of the story. Additionally, many responders see these crashes as civil disputes between insurance companies. As a result, they do not issue citations, because they do not want to get involved.

That leaves the ordinary negligence doctrine. Negligence is basically a lack of care. Most non-commercial drivers in Florida have a duty of reasonable care. They must obey the rules of the road, avoid accidents when possible, and drive defensively. Not looking before turning clearly violates this duty.

In both these situations, insurance company lawyers often argue that the rider had the last clear chance to avoid the wreck. Therefore, the rider is legally responsible, even though the rider did nothing wrong.

However, note that this defense is the last clear chance, not any possible chance. Sudden stops and lane changes are dangerous on two-wheel motorcycles. Such maneuvers often cause riders to lose control of their bikes. As a result, they might cause a worse accident than the one they prevented.

Compensation Available

Florida is a no-fault insurance state. Therefore, to obtain maximum compensation, victim/plaintiffs must normally prove they sustained a serious injury. But the no-fault law exempts vehicle-on-motorcycle wrecks.

So, these victims are almost always entitled to compensation for their economic losses, such as medical bills, and their noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. Additional punitive damages might be available as well, in some extreme cases.

Left-turn motorcycle wrecks often cause serious injuries. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Orlando, contact JustCallMoe. Home and hospital visits are available.

Knowledge Is Power

Arm Yourself With Free Copies Of Our Books


Find out the5 costly mistakesof personal injury cases

Many accident and injury victims believe that if they cooperate with the insurance company they will get a fair and timely settlement. Unfortunately it is way too easy to he pushed into waiving your rights for a settlement that doesn't cover your medical bills and lost wages. Injury law can be very complex. You must have a basic knowledge of how the process works, so that others do not take advantage of you. Do not make the mistakes i have listed in this book!


Your legal guide toMotorcycle Injurycompensation

The only thing worse than being seriously injured in a motorcycle accident is to NOT get the compensation you deserve – or to find out later that you have been taken advantage of by an insurance company. Do not make the mistakes i have listed in this book!


Your Legal Guide to Car AccidentsIn Florida

When you’re in a crash, the clock starts ticking. In order to fight for your maximum compensation, you have to look after your health and protect yourself from the insurance company’s tricks. Don’t be unprepared for the journey ahead. DO NOT MAKE THE MISTAKES I HAVE LISTED IN THIS BOOK!

Get Help Now

(866) 225-5663 It’s easy to get started.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Sheild Icon 100% Secure and Confidential