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The Hazards of Road Rash

By Joseph Low on July 1, 2022

injured victim receiving E.R. medical help

Causes of Road Rash

Road rash occurs where the driver or passenger falls from the motorcycle onto the road and is dragged for a distance along the road. The risk and effects of road rash is well known in motorcycling communities due to how frequently it happens.

Protective measures are often undertaken, however, leather and even additional padding cannot always prevent the skin from coming into contact with the road and other surfaces. Other accidents causing road rash also include skateboarding, cycling, walking or jogging outdoors, and treadmill use.

How Is Road Rash Classed?

Like burns, road rash is measured in three degrees, which relate to the different symptoms. These include:

First-degree Road Rash

First-degree road rash refers to minor rash injuries such as superficial scraps, and redness.

Second-degree Road Rash

Second degree road rash describes a more severe rash injury that breaks the skin, however, does not affect deep tissue. The symptoms include redness, pain, and bleeding where medical intervention is required.

Third-degree Road Rash

Third-degree road rash is the most serious form of the injury. This refers to near-complete skin loss affecting deep tissue such as fat, muscle, and cartilage. The victim may experience severe pain lasting more than two hours after treatment, fluid indicating infection, and they may also experience shock, paleness, confusion, nausea, and vomiting.

In any road rash injury, the extent of skin that has been removed is also of central importance. Therefore, if you experience second or third-degree road rash on a large percentage of your body, you should seek medical attention.

If you or a loved one are suffering from a third degree road rash, you must seek medical attention immediately. You may have serious injuries you are unaware of and will potentially be at risk of infection. In some cases, muscle can be pulled away from the bone, or nerve damage may occur, requiring grafting surgery. You may not be aware of the severity of your injury so if you are unsure, please seek medical attention.

How is Road Rash Treated?

Medical treatment for road rash varies depending on the degree of injury. There are various factors that could make road rash complex to treat. Whilst first and second-degree road rash generally only require first aid treatment, various factors can influence the severity and complexity of injury and treatment. Common treatment for road rash includes:


When a motorcycle accident occurs, various materials such as concrete, gravel and glass can come into contact with the skin. If the wound is left uncleaned, these substances can remain in the wound, causing discoloration and infection.

Dry and Dress

Once cleaned, it is important to keep the injured skin dry. Ointments and antibacterial treatment should also be applied to the wound to reduce the risk of infection, reduce pain and ensure healing. The wound should also be bandaged.

Skin Graft

Third-degree road rash and deeper rashes often require additional medical procedures. Skin grafts are a common form of treatment for more severe injuries. This involves using the victim’s own body or cadaver to heal the skin.

Contact an Attorney at The Law Firm of Joseph H. Low IV for Legal Representation

Lawyers at Joseph H. Low IV are skilled in personal injury law. We are here to support you and ensure you receive the compensation that you deserve. We understand the difficulties surrounding injuries such as road rash and are here to navigate the way for you. Get in contact with a Long Beach road rash injury lawyer today at (562) 901-0840.

Posted in: Motorcycle Accident

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