On Sunday evening, a motorcycle wreck took the life of one person and sent another to the hospital in Meers, Oklahoma. According to KSWO ABC News Channel Seven, the incident happened near the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge. Officials with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol report that the driver, 50-year-old Scott Heath, was thrown from the motorcycle after veering off of the roadway.
The bike struck rocks on the side of the road, and Heath was thrown about 25 feet from the vehicle. He was transported to the hospital, but did not survive his injuries. His passenger, a 49-year-old female, was injured in the wreck and rushed to a local hospital as well. Although few details about the crash were released, we do know that neither Heath nor the injured passenger were wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, and initial reports indicate that impaired riding could have been a factor in the wreck.
Motorcycle Crash Facts
- In 2012, there were 4,957 motorcycle crash fatalities across the U.S.
- Motorcycle crash deaths increased by seven percent from 2011 to 2012.
- 27 percent of all motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes in 2012 were legally drunk.
- Over 2,000 of those crashes were single-vehicle motorcycle wrecks.
- 43 percent of riders killed in single-vehicle motorcycle crashes were impaired at the time of the wreck.
If a passenger is injured in a crash where the driver of the motorcycle was impaired, the passenger may have a claim against the drunk driver. If you or a loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident, you should speak to an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible to get the ball rolling on your case.
Helmets and Safety Gear
Motorcyclists are also encouraged to wear helmets and other safety gear when they take to the road. Safe riding practices just aren’t enough with distracted and impaired drivers on the roadway. Wearing a helmet and practicing safe riding behaviors are the two best ways to protect yourself out there, but ultimately, drivers need to share the road too.
There’s no word on the extent of injuries suffered by the female passenger, but KSWO ABC News Channel Seven did report that she was treated and released from the hospital. The team at the Altman Legal Group sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Scott Heath and wishes a speedy and full recovery to the injured passenger.