Migrating deer, fallen leaves among risks motorcyclists face in autumn

Fall weather is beautiful, but can be dangerous for drivers, particularly motorcyclists. Fog, frost and sun glare are just a few of the dangers.

This time of year in South Carolina, nearly anyone would enjoy a drive through the country to enjoy the fall colors. Autumn is especially enjoyable for motorcyclists - the air is not as hot as during the summer, but it isn't yet too cold to get out and enjoy the open road. Unfortunately, however, there are numerous fall hazards that can result in motorcyclists being injured, in addition to the dangers bikers face from other drivers.

Crashes involving motorcyclists are of particular concern in South Carolina, states Greenville Online. So far this year, 88 motorcyclists have been killed in accidents - a 54 percent increase over the same time period last year, during which 57 bikers lost their lives. Greenville County ranks third in the state for fatal crashes involving a combination of motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians.

Factors possibly contributing to more motorcycle crashes

Authorities believe this surge in motorcycle fatalities may be due in part to an increase in vacation traffic during the summer, as well as more traffic on the roads as school starts up again. Some of the most common crash factors have included DUI, speeding and failing to yield the right of way.

According to Esurance, many road and weather conditions begin to show up in autumn, which can be especially dangerous for motorcyclists. These may include the following:

  • Fallen leaves on the road becoming slick with rain and frost
  • Foggy days decreasing visibility and increasing the risk of glare if bright headlights are used
  • Early morning frost causing slippery road conditions
  • Sun glare in the early mornings or evenings
  • Deer becoming more active and wandering out onto the roads

In fact, a deer recently caused the death of a 62-year-old man in Pickens County. WYFF4 News reported that the deer went onto the road as the man approached on South Carolina Highway 11. The biker struck the animal head-on and was ejected from his motorcycle.

Extra careful seasonal driving is vital

Motorcyclists and other drivers can take precautions in the fall to reduce their chances of being seriously injured or killed in an accident. During periods of reduced visibility or wet weather, reducing speed and being vigilant for motorcycles and pedestrians may keep others safe. It is also important to give other vehicles extra space, especially motorcycles, which can easily lose control in bad weather or approaching obstacles such as deer. Drivers should also refrain from using high beams in the fog to reduce glare.

You may be facing serious financial and physical hardships after being injured in a motorcycle crash. If a negligent or intoxicated driver caused a crash resulting in your injuries, you may be eligible for compensation. An experienced personal injury attorney should be able to advise you.