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Car Driver in Massachusetts Hits Westwood Motorcycle Police Officer

In Westwood on Tuesday, Officer John McHarrie of the Westwood Police Department was released from the hospital after he was treated for personal injuries he sustained when the police motorcycle he was riding was hit by a motor vehicle. The traffic collision occurred close to the intersection of Westdale Road and Carroll Avenue.

The 37-year-old police veteran had to be airlifted to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston where he was treated for his injuries and then sent home to continue recovering.

McHarrie was on duty at the time of the accident and was looking into a burglar alarm report at a home on St. Denis Drive. He had activated the police emergency lights on his motorcycle.

Massachusetts State Police and Westwood Police both investigated the crash. They say that Jooyoun Paik, the 33-year-old driver of a Toyota Matrix hatchback, hit McHarrie’s motorcycle while trying to turn left into a driveway. The Westwood resident was issued two citations for failure to yield while making a left turn and failure to yield to an emergency vehicle. Both citations are civil, not criminal charges.

Motorcycle drivers are especially susceptible to personal injuries during traffic collisions because they don’t have anything to physically protect them from being hurt in a crash.

The Insurance Information Institute offers a number of statistics regarding motorcycle accidents, including the following:

4,798 people died in motorcycle crashes in 2006.

About 88,000 motorcycles were involved in crashes in 2004.

The Hurt Study says that 75% of motorcycle collisions involved some kind of car. Motorists’ failure to notice motorcycles on the road is a major cause for motorcycle accidents, with intersections being one of the more common places for a traffic collision involving a motorcycle crash to occur.

Also, 98% of motorcycle crashes where there was at least one other vehicle involved resulted in some type of injury to the motorcycle rider. 50% of injuries sustained by a motorcycle rider usually occurred to the lower half of the body, including the thighs, upper leg, knee, lower leg, foot, ankle, and groin area. Chest and head injured sustained in a motor crash proved to be the most fatal.

Driver Cited After Hitting Motorcycle Cop, Boston Herald.com, July 26, 2007
Motorcycle Crashes, Insurance Information Institute
Findings from the Hurt Study

Related Web Resources:

Motorcycle Safety Foundation

Injury Prevention: Motorcycles, NHTSA
If you or someone you love has been critically injured in a motorcycle accident because another motor vehicle driver acted negligently, a personal injury lawyer can help you file a claim so that you can obtain the compensation that you deserve. Medical bills will likely be extremely high, which is why you need a personal injury attorney to deal with the other party and make sure that you are not shortchanged on the recovery money that you need to help you get the proper care that you need.

In Massachusetts, Altman & Altman LLP is a personal injury firm that has successfully represented many people who have been seriously injured in motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, dog bite accidents, construction accidents, and other kinds of personal injury cases.

Contact Altman & Altman LLP at (877) 721-4824 and at (617) 326-5347 to ask for your free consultation. Our law firm is conveniently located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and, for more than 40 years, we have represented personal injury clients in cities throughout the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.