A driver's failure to stay in her own lane on a rural highway in Greenville, South Carolina (SC), led directly to the death of a motorcycle rider on the morning of July 20, 2016. The fatal accident occurred on Highway 14 near the turnoff to Forrester Drive in the community of Greer.
According to South Carolina Highway Patrol investigators, the woman behind the wheel of a car crossed a double yellow line and made contact with the motorcyclist. The impact forced the biker off the road and into a ditch. The motorcyclist was then thrown from his bike and into a tree. His cause of death is listed as blunt force trauma. Police charged the woman, who also suffered injuries after careening off the other side of the road, with driving left of center. Other charges may follow.
Reports on this deadly wreck note that the motorcyclist was not wearing a helmet. An insurance company presented with a wrongful death claim by the family of the motorcycle rider who lost his life may try to use that information as a reason to deny coverage. However, state laws in South Carolina do not require helmets for bikers.
While putting on head protection may be recommended, choosing not to do so does not constitute recklessness or negligence under the laws of the Palmetto State. What will be relevant in any insurance claim or civil lawsuit arising from this Greenville County motorcycle crash are the unsafe actions of the car's driver.