Because Tennessee becomes a common hotspot for motorcycle riders in the warm months, the state has a number of safety requirements in place for these cyclists to reduce the severity of injuries sustained in accidents. Not following these traffic laws, however, can affect a motorcyclist’s ability to collect compensation.
Tennessee Motorcycle Laws
Since roadways are controlled by the state that they lie in, each state’s driver regulations differ. Tennessee takes a hands-on approach to motorcycle safety by instilling the following laws:
- Motorcyclists must wear a safety helmet while riding. The following brands are approved: DOT, CSPM, SNELL, and SIRC.
- Headlights must be used both during the day and at night.
- Motorcyclists must wear eye protection unless their motorcycles have a windshield.
- Lane splitting is illegal in Tennessee.
- All motorcycles must have both a left- and a right-side mirror.
- Motorcycles must have a muffler; cutouts are illegal.
- Any motorcycles transporting a passenger must have passenger seating and a passenger footrest.
Tennessee is one of the many states that follows the modified comparative negligence system. By using this system, a judge or jury will determine each driver’s percentage of fault in the accident, then award damages accordingly. If the plaintiff’s percentage of liability reaches a certain level, no damages or compensation will be awarded. In Tennessee, an accident victim is only allowed to collect damages if he or she is found to be 49 percent (or less) at fault. If each driver is 50 percent responsible for the accident, neither party will be granted compensation nor be required to pay compensation. The judge or jury will determine each driver’s role in the accident by analyzing its details. Were both drivers completely sober? Was either driver using a cell phone or otherwise distracted? Were the drivers speeding when they collided? A number of factors will be considered by the court, including the motorcycle rider’s adherence to the safety laws above.
Contact a Chattanooga Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Accidents involving motorcyclists are often much more severe than passenger car collisions. This makes the collection of compensation even more important for you as the injured motorcycle rider. Your injuries can lead to significant medical bills, force you to take weeks or months off work, and alter your daily functioning. At Warren & Griffin, P.C., our legal team fights tirelessly for our clients because we understand the implications that serious accidents can have on their present and future.
Even if you failed to follow the laws explained above, you may still have a case against the other driver. Call our tenacious Tennessee personal injury attorneys at 423-265-4878 to discuss the details of your case.