Leg Injuries Common in Motorcycle Accidents Due to Riding Position

Most motorcyclists become engaged in riding out on the open road because they are drawn to a more unique way to travel, enjoying the freedom of the fresh air and the power of the bike taking them to their destination—or perhaps nowhere in particular on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. The health benefits abound, from the sheer focus required, to the constant exercise one receives while operating such a weighty vehicle. While the arms, neck, and core get a great workout, the legs and thighs become more strengthened in every ride.

The legs are used almost constantly, not only as you grip the bike while riding, but also as you nudge it from its stand while in a sitting position, giving support while idling at a red light, and more. If you are new to the world of motorcycling, you may find it useful to employ strength training before buying a motorcycle or as you begin getting used to it slowly. Hitting the gym can help you build up the proper muscles and prevent fatigue while you are on the road.

Along with increasing strength and enjoying all that the world of motorcycling has to offer though, it is important to remember that the legs are one of the most vulnerable areas in the case of an accident. This is mainly because the entire weight of the bike could fall on one of your legs—and leg fractures are one of the most common injuries resulting from motorcycle crashes. As the bike topples or the motorcyclist is thrown, they commonly break arms and wrists also as they reach out to try and protect themselves from a fall.

The head/brain area is one of the most vulnerable areas also, which is why helmets are so heavily encouraged, often preventing instances of concussions or traumatic brain injury (TBI). When traveling on your motorcycle, remember to work overtime watching out for motorists. Unfortunately, they are your greatest danger on the road as not only are they often too distracted to see other cars but have much more trouble ‘seeing’ motorcycles as they are smaller, and the eye is not as well-trained to look out for them.

Intersections are one of the most common areas for motorcycle/car crashes as well; again, this is an area where motorists may speed ahead or turn without seeing a motorcycle (or a bicyclist, or a pedestrian). Alcohol, speed, and distractions are often to blame in such crashes as well.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.


Bicycling Tips: Staying Safe on Two Wheels in Florida

Florida is famous for so much goodness: white, sandy beaches and the Gulf. Sophisticated cities nestled near the Atlantic. Islands and great fishing. Disney World!

There is much to enjoy while traveling up and down this long stretch of area so popular with vacationers and retirees. The Sunshine State also boasts weather and terrain that is all too tempting for bicyclists. Unfortunately, looks can be deceptive though as while Florida may be enticing, it has also gained a reputation for being dangerous for cyclists overall.

More than one report has confirmed that the state of Florida has an inordinate amount of bike crashes; and in fact, a recent news article reported that the Florida Department of Transportation is now closely examining why their state is responsible for as much as 20 percent of cyclist deaths (as in 2014). New data from Florida International University shows that motorists were found negligent in 46 percent of crashes, while those riding bicyclists were at fault in 30 percent of the incidents.

As a bicyclist in Florida, you may feel completely at ease on the road. The problem, however, is usually other motorists who are distracted, impaired, speeding, or driving carelessly due to other issues. Here are some tips to stay safe:

  • Be especially aware at intersections. More bicycle crashes tend to happen at intersections and especially during left and right turns.
  • Try to avoid congested traffic areas when possible. Although you may be an extremely experienced cyclist, and the road is supposed to be shared, motorists may not always have the best attitude (or manners) regarding your presence on a busy road.
  • Use bike paths whenever possible.
  • Learn and employ hand signals for use while riding in traffic. Always ride (on the right side) with the flow of traffic, not against it.
  • Watch for parked cars. Not only can running into one cause significant injury to you, your bike, and even the car—but you can also be seriously hurt if someone flings open a door unpredictably just as you are passing by.
  • Make sure your bike has a working horn, as well as lights for traveling at dusk or night.
  • Make your presence known with brightly colored (neon is always a good choice!) clothing.

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.


Motorcycle Accidents: Traumatic Brain Injuries All Too Common

Although your drive to work today and back—and perhaps a quick stop to the drugstore or grocery store—may have seemed safe enough and completely without complication, there is no doubt that the roads can be a deceptively dangerous place. Traffic injuries and fatalities have been on the rise, with tens of thousands killed each year, and millions injured in car crashes.

Other motorists can be your greatest danger. Although drivers who are inexperienced, impaired, or tired are major concerns, distracted driving is an enormous threat today to everyone on the road. And due to their vulnerability, motorcyclists must practice even greater diligence as they travel the roads and highways of the US. Data available from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows that nearly 5,000 motorcyclists died in 2016. Of those fatalities 61 percent were wearing their helmets.

In the case of a motorcycle accident, and especially in more violent crashes with cars, all involved—but especially the motorcyclist and any passengers—are at risk for traumatic brain injury (TBI). This is a scenario where all the ingredients are present for catastrophe, and especially if the motorcyclist or their passenger is not wearing a helmet. The impact of hitting the pavement can be severe, even if the motorcyclist is traveling at a relatively slow speed when struck or becoming involved in an accident.

The traumatic brain injury ranges from mild to severe and may even include permanent brain damage or result in fatality. The recuperation time after such an accident can be long-term, and it may be difficult for someone who has experienced a TBI to go back to work either temporarily or permanently. Symptoms vary, to include:

  • Mild – drowsiness, headaches, memory loss, sleep issues, anxiety and depression
  • Moderate to Severe – loss of consciousness, vomiting, seizures, weakness, lack of coordination, confusion, sleep issues, speech issues, and more

If you have experienced a serious blow to the head after a motorcycle wreck, or due to any other accident, seek medical help as soon as possible. Any state of unconsciousness should raise major concern and be addressed quickly.

If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.


Skin Irregularities Caused by Complex Regional Pain Syndrome

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) is a rare condition triggered by numerous events. While car wrecks are a common cause due to physical trauma that can lead to CRPS, other accidents, surgeries, and medical procedures may be responsible too. And although in most cases, medical professionals (or the individuals themselves) can pinpoint why CRPS occurs, sometimes the reason is unknown.

One of the most confounding issues with CRPS is that the symptoms of this condition may be so much worse than the initial injury; for instance, even a mild sprain may later trigger severe pain that seems much worse than the original accident. The pain may be chronic and ongoing, leaving the patient confused about what happened to cause such a serious health problem, usually with only one limb affected.

While changes in sensitivity and temperature around the area affected by CRPS are common—along with pain—skin irregularities are often associated with the condition too. The individual suffering from CRPS may be highly concerned about how their skin looks once CRPS takes hold, but even worse is the discomfort which causes issues such as:

  • Skin rashes
  • Discoloration that is pale, red, blue, pink, or tinged with other colors
  • Extreme skin sensitivity even to something as minor as a waft of air
  • A paper thin or glossy appearance
  • New growth patterns in hair on the affected arm or leg

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke makes it clear that many of these symptoms are ‘due to microcirculation caused by damage to the nerves controlling blood flow and temperature.’ Patients may have difficulty moving their limbs or may experience a foot or leg remaining in a fixed position temporarily or permanently. Coordination problems may occur, along with shaking or spasticity. Swelling is a common symptom in the affected limb too, along with excessive perspiration concentrated in that area.

Diagnosis is not always easy at first because there is not a specific test for CRPS; rather, a doctor can only rule out other issues first and judge the symptoms, which may be severe (and obvious) in some cases. Treatments vary from over-the-counter pain relievers to lidocaine or opioids, with physical therapy often being effective too.

If you have been affected by an injury caused by the negligence of others and are seeking a skilled CRPS lawyer, contact Heintz & Becker today. Our attorneys have helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help, and if you cannot come to us, we will come to you.

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.


Avoid Accidents on Foot: Pedestrians Must Follow Traffic Rules

The benefits of daily exercise—and especially walking— are clear. You can trim your waistline, strengthen your bones, ward off heart trouble, and feel better all around. Whether you are walking to work or taking a jaunt on your lunch hour though, safety is key—and especially if you are traveling on foot in an urban area with lots of traffic and crosswalks.

As a pedestrian, you are at a distinct disadvantage in traffic due to a general lack of protection for your body as you travel amidst vehicles that weigh 4,000 pounds or more.

While a car accident can be terribly dangerous, when a car hits an individual in traffic, the results are often much worse.

Thousands of pedestrian injuries occur each year, many of which are caused by drivers who are distracted, tired, impaired by drugs and/or alcohol, or speeding; in fact, carelessness and high speeds near crosswalks lead to injuries and fatalities all too often. Continue reading


Florida: Underaged Motorcyclists Must Wear Approved Helmets

While any type of highway travel has the potential to be dangerous, motorcyclists are more susceptible to injury and even death due to their proximity to the road and lack of protection in comparison to the massive weight of an automobile. Being hit by a car can be catastrophic, not to mention the trauma of slamming into the pavement and other obstacles, along with experiencing road rash while skidding on gravel.

Although wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of concussion, traumatic brain injury, and more, they are not required in numerous states, to include Florida. Rules for minors vary, however, and in Florida if you are under 21, you must wear a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation. Continue reading


Early Treatment May Offer Better Outcome for CRPS

Complex regional pain syndrome is a unique and challenging health issue. Because it usually arises after an individual has already spent time healing from a previous injury, being dealt another physical challenge on top of that can be very distressing—and especially one that is worse than the previous condition which may have been a sprain, broken bone, or even a stroke or heart problem. Continue reading


Older Pedestrians Are at Greater Risk in Traffic

Each day, most of us travel to multiple destinations by foot, bike, or car, without incident. Usually traversing familiar routes, some of us might be able to reach our destinations with our eyes closed if we had to.

The problem is that today while motorists may have their eyes open, they are watching everything but the road. So many regular vehicles today are like traveling homes with just as many distractions, featuring all the latest electronics—with the most dangerous one being the smartphone. Continue reading


Engine Size May Correlate with Motorcycle Fatalities

Even if you know nothing about motorcycles, the allure is obvious. Whether you are checking out your neighbor’s new ride or listening to an engine rev next to you in traffic, it is easy to understand the temptation to enter a whole new realm of travel.

Motorcyclists encompass a large community in the US, with millions riding and taking great pride in their bikes, so many of which bear glossy steel, growling motors, and confident riders.

Overconfidence in larger motors may be contributing to more accidents and fatalities though, according to Insurance Institute for Highway Safety information. Continue reading


CRPS May Occur After Relatively Minor Injuries, Affecting Quality of Life

We have so many more, innovative, safety mechanisms in cars today, along with laws that prohibit driving while impaired, as well as texting while driving. Seatbelts are required to be worn in most states, and children must be in the proper car seats for their height, weight, and age. Information abounds regarding the dangers of distracted driving, drunk driving, speeding, and more, yet traffic fatalities only continue to rise, along with accidents on all levels.

If you survived a car accident with only a minor injury, you may have been quite surprised and dismayed to develop painful—and even disabling symptoms—due to complex regional pain syndrome.

Type 1 CRPS can develop after something as simple as a sprain, and an injury that did not cause nerve damage itself. Type 2 CRPS develops after what is usually obvious damage to the nervous system. Continue reading