Compensation for Motorcycle Road Rash
Motorcyclists often sustain road rash if they are involved in an accident that leads to them colliding with the pavement. Even though motorcyclists do usually recover fully from road rash injuries, that does not mean that there are no medical bills in the interim. In some cases, individuals do end up with long-term complications or scarring as a result of the road rash incident. Here, we want to discuss whether or not motorcyclists can recover compensation for road rash injuries.
What is Road Rash and How Does it Affect Victims
The term “road rash” encompasses a variety of types of injuries that a person can sustain, but the mechanism of injury always includes the body coming into contact with the surface of the road or some other rough surface that can cause damage to the body.
Many individuals refer to road rash incidents as abrasions, but the reality is that these types of injuries are often much more severe than that. Yes, minor road rash could certainly be considered an abrasion., but other types of road rash injuries include:
- Avulsions. Innovation is the most common type of severe road rash injury, and this occurs when the skin surface is stripped away as a result of friction with the ground or concrete. Some avulsions can be severe and reach layers lower than the outer dermis and epidermis. This can include fat layers and muscle layers, or even bone being exposed.
- Compression injury. Compression injuries occur when parts of the body get caught between two separate objects. The torso, arms, and legs are more likely to suffer from compression injuries.
There are varying degrees of road rash, though these are not formally classified in the same way that burn injuries are. Typically, we can consider the following degrees with these types of injuries:
- First degree. This is the least severe type of road rash a person can sustain and will typically only affect the outermost layer of the skin. This can include scrapes and scratches that cause the skin to become reddened and temporarily irritated. This type of injury should heal relatively quickly.
- Second degree. This is a road rash injury of moderate severity and will typically result in the epidermis, the outer layer of skin, becoming torn away and resulting in a deeper laceration. This exposes the underlying layer of skin and results in the body becoming more susceptible to infections. This type of injury will take longer to heal than a first-degree road rash.
- Third degree. This is considered a severe road rash injury and occurs when the outer layer and second skin layer get peeled away. This exposes underlying muscle, fat, ligaments, tendons, and even bone, depending on the severity of the incident. Recovery from this type of road rash injury will certainly take longer and will usually require skin grafts and reconstructive surgery. Additionally, this type of severe injury can lead to significant nerve damage, impaired movement, and permanent scarring or disfigurement.
Motorcycle Crash Data From Illinois
According to information available from the Illinois Department of Transportation, we can see that there were nearly 3,000 total motorcycle crashes reported across the state during the latest year of data on file. Out of these incidents, there were 152 motorcyclist fatalities and more than 2,400 motorcyclist injuries. Out of these injuries, 867 were considered catastrophic.
Motorcyclists sustain fatalities and injuries at a higher rate when accidents occur than those inside traditional passenger vehicles. The simple fact is that motorcyclists are much more vulnerable to injuries, including road rash.