A motorcycle rider suffered fatal injuries when he collided with a pickup truck in Kernersville, North Carolina (NC), on the afternoon of December 18, 2017. The deadly wreck happened in 500 block of Hopkins Road, a little north of the turnoffs to regents road and Timberwood Trail.
Local police responded to the scene of the crash at around 4 pm. They identified the motorcyclist as lost his life as 48-year-old Brian David Plesko. News reports do not contain information on whether anyone in the pickup sustained an injury.
Hopkins Road curves slightly in the area where this fatal collision occurred, The rural highway consists of two lanes divided by double yellow line. This suggests the driver, the motorcyclist or both crossed the center line, leading to a head-on collision. Investigators, however, did not offer an explanation for why the motorcycle and pickup collided. They are asking anyone who witnessed the incident to share what they saw by calling (336) 996-3177.
Regardless of what authorities discover, this crash on Hopkins Road in Kernersville serves as a sad reminder that motorcyclists face deadly risks from any collision. During 2015, the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles recorded 3,746 crashes involving motorcycles in the Tar Heel State. Those wrecks resulted in 172 deaths and 2,986 injuries.
The grim toll reflects the reality that motorcycles have no side panels, front and rear end crumple zones or air bags. Many drivers in cars and trucks also find it difficult to judge the speed of motorcycles and the distance between themselves and a motorcycle. Too many drivers experience problems with seeing motorcycles at all.
My Carolina wrongful death and personal injury law firm colleagues and I send our deepest condolences out the family and friends of the motorcycle rider who died after the wreck in Kernersville. We also want to take this opportunity to share the North Carolina Department of Transportation’s list of recommendations for sharing the road safely and respectfully with motorcyclists:
- Share the road. Motorcyclists have the right to a full lane;
- Stay alert and be aware that motorcycles can be easily hidden in a car’s blind spot, so take an extra moment to thoroughly check traffic when changing lanes, especially at intersections;
- Always signal when changing lanes or merging with traffic;
- Keep a safe distance by allowing more following space -- three to four seconds -- behind motorcycles;
- Be cautious, as not all turn signals on a motorcycle are self-canceling, thus some riders sometimes forget to turn them off after a turn or lane change;
- Obey the posted speed limit; and
- Never drive distracted or impaired.