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Motorcyclist is Killed When He Hit a Tree in York County (VA).

When you are riding a high powered motorcycle one mistake can prove to be deadly.


Sadly this proved to be the case for James Douglas Rountree, 50 of Williamsburg (VA) who died on Sunday when his Harley-Davidson hit a tree in York County (VA), the Daily Press reported.


State police said he was traveling west on Route 199, when he lost control of his motorcycle. He went off the roadway and struck a tree.

The circumstances of this tragedy are not clear.


What is clear is the large number of fatalities involving motorcyclists. Tragically the victims are often young, such as the 24-year-old motorcyclist killed in Virginia Beach (VA) at the end of 2009.


Last year we reported on a spate of motorcycle injuries and deaths that saw four people killed in two weeks in Virginia (VA) and North Carolina (NC).

If you are involved in a motorcycle wreck you are more vulnerable than if you are in a car wreck.


In 2008, over 5,000 motor bike riders were killed in accidents, the highest level since the Department of Transportation began collecting data in 1975 and a 2.2 percent increase from 2007, according to the Insurance Information Institute.


But Virginia (VA) saw a spike in motorcycle deaths in 2007. The number of motorcyclists killed on the Virginia Peninsula, in Suffolk (VA) and in Isle of Wight County (VA) rose from four in 2006 to 16 in 2007.

Even more disturbing is the fact that motor bike crashes have increased every year for the past 11 years and motorcyclists are 37 times more likely to die in a crash than a passenger in a car and nine times more likely to be injured, according to National Highway Transportation Safety Administration.

The best advice to follow in order to avoid becoming a statistic is to follow the speed limit, always wear a helmet, and be extremely cautious while riding your motorcycle.

Our firm has considerable expertise in case involving motorcycles. In a 2008 our clients received $1.5 million in a settlement after their Harley-Davidson was hit by a car driven by a county police officer which drifted over the center line, sideswiped a pick-up truck and hit the Plantiffs' motorcycle head on.

See this video on motorcycle safety.


Richard N. Shapiro
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Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Lawyer Serving Va Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake & all of Virginia
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