Fatal Collision on State Highway 4 in Concord Kills Motorcyclist

On Thursday morning, May 15, 2014 a collision between a car and a motorcycle claimed one persons life

An off-duty police officer from Oakland, along with medical and fire units responded to the accident around 7 a.m. near the intersection of Will Pass Road and Avila road. Accord to Officer Kevin Bartlett of the California Highway Patrol, the driver of the motorcycle, whose identity has not been released, is believed to be the only fatality in the wreck.

Details about what caused the accident are not currently available at this time, and an investigation by the CHP is ongoing.

Although the cause of this motorcycle related fatality is not yet known, it is another example of how deadly a wreck between a motorcycle and automobile can and, all too often, turn out to be.

According to statistics provided by the U.S. Department of Transportations Highway Traffic Safety Administration, motorcyclists run a thirty-five percent greater risk of being involved in a fatal accident than passenger cars. In 2006 alone, 4,810 motorcyclists lost their lives on our roadways, while 88,000 suffered injuries. With more motorcycle riders than ever taking to the highways, fatality and injury rates have skyrocketed in the last few years.

The harsh reality is, while motorcycle riders are susceptible to operator error too, most motorcycle wrecks involving a collision with a passenger vehicle happen as a result of negligence shown by the driver of the passenger vehicle. Common examples of the negligent behavior of automobile drivers are violating a motorcyclists right of way, failing to yield at intersections, and drivers of large vehicles failing to check their blinds spots before proceeding to change lanes.

Some tips that could help avoid motorcycle involved auto accidents include the following:

When at an intersection, always look for motorcycles while checking traffic. There are usually several more automobiles and trucks on the roads at any given time than motorcycles, and, sadly, some drivers fail to notice motorcycles at all.

Always assume a motorcycle is closer in distance than it appears when checking traffic near a driveway or making a turn at an intersection. Motorcycles may appear to be further away than they really are, due to their smaller size.

While turning at an intersection or making a lane change, be careful to take an extra moment to check traffic thoroughly. A motorcycles speed is difficult to judge and, because of its smaller size, can all too easily be hidden in an automobile drivers blind spot or blend into the background or objects outside a car.

Follow a motorcycle at a greater distance than other automobiles. This gives extra response time should the motorcycle come to a stop or suddenly slow down, as motorcyclists often slow down using their engines and do not always use their brakes, resulting in no brake light signaling a stop or a slow down.

These are just a few safety suggestions that, if followed, can hopefully avoid tragic accidents like the one at Will Pass Road and Avila road from happening, and another motorcyclist family from having to endure the life-changing consequences

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