Did a motorcycle accident leave you injured or claim the life of a loved one? Collisions involving motorcycles are, sadly, all too common in the state of Tennessee. According to researchers, there may be a reason for this. Inattentional blindness, they say, contributes to many motorcycle accidents ever year.

Inattentional blindness is not a concept that is new to researchers. It is something scientists and psychologists have been studying for years. What causes it? How big of an issue is it?

Inattentional blindness is…

The human brain is an amazing thing. It is capable of taking in and processing a great deal of information as the day goes on. However, if it receives too much information in a short period of time, the brain will filter out what it views as unimportant.

In some cases, this is good; it can help people focus. In other cases, this is a bad thing, as it can cause people not to see things that are right in front of them. Inattention blindness is the blocking out of needed information.

How big is the problem?

In 2018, researchers at Australian National University conducted an inattentional blindness study. They wanted to see how this phenomenon affected people when behind the wheel of a car. Study participants had to look through various photos of typical traffic scenes and identify which were safe driving environments and which were not. In the very last picture, a motorcycle or other object was placed in plain view, but roughly half of the participants missed it. Researchers say more people missed seeing the motorcycle than any of the other objects introduced.

The study group was small, but still, nearly 50% or drivers missed the motorcyclist. This just shows how little importance the brain puts on smaller, harder-to-see objects when a person is behind the wheel of a car.

Is inattention blindness a reason for drivers who crash into motorcyclists to avoid liability?

Thankfully, no. It may be a known issue, but failure to see a motorcyclist is rarely enough for someone to escape liability for the victim’s or — in the event of fatality — his or her family’s losses. Those who would like to seek relief following motorcycle accidents may have the right to do so. With assistance, you may file the appropriate claims in an effort to seek maximum compensation for any documented damages such as medical expenses, funeral costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, and so much more.