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Motorcycle DWI in New Jersey

Motorcycle riders look tough on the outside, but that does not mean they do not need to stay alert during traffic. According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report in March 2008, using 2006 data, motorcycles made up nearly 3 percent of all registered vehicles in the United States, but were about 35 times more likely than passenger car occupants to die in a vehicle crash and 8 times more likely injured.

Nj.com reported on July 2, 2009 in “Cops charge driver with DUI in Linden motorcycle accident” that a 40-year-old Linden, NJ man was charged with driving while under the influence after his motorcycle skidded to a halt and tipped over in the middle of a street. The man and his passenger landed in a hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The man sustained internal injuries and his passenger sustained head injuries. Both were charged with wearing unapproved helmets while riding a motorcycle. The man was charged with driving while under the influence, reckless driving and operating a vehicle with a suspended driver’s license. He lost control of his 1995 Harley Davidson at North Wood and West Elizabeth avenues in Linden, NJ.

Because motorcycles are smaller than vehicles, and riders are exposed when they collide with vehicles or otherwise fall, riders sustain catastrophic injuries like traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, or death. If a motorcycle accident results from driving while intoxicated, the injured driver may suffer:

  • Medical care
  • Loss of earnings
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Psychological counseling
  • Property damage

Soon after getting out of the emergency room, the injured driver who drove under the influence faces criminal charges, carrying heavy penalties like fines, fees to drunk driving funds, license suspension, ignition interlock device, jail time, and community service. Some cyclists may know to obtain motorcycle insurance to protect from overwhelming loss when an accident occurs, but there may not be enough coverage to fully compensate when there is not coverage in each loss category such as liability, property, medical, underinsured/uninsured, and collision, or when the limits in each category are not enough to pay for damages. Most insurance does not cover criminal liabilities for driving under the influence.

When accused of driving under the influence, face what might appear to be crushing defeat with poise. …C’est la Vie, right? That’s life…

Often the legal aspects of being accused of driving a motorcycle while drunk or drugged up require a New Jersey criminal defense attorney who bravely fights for reduced jail time and fees.

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