Elk Grove Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Bicycle accidents are especially dangerous for cyclists because they commonly involve large motor vehicles such as cars, trucks, SUVs, and motorcycles. Bikes do not provide the same level of protection against injury as cars. Unlike a driver who has the added protection of a metal enclosure, airbags, seatbelts, and antilock brakes, cyclists are equipped with only a helmet, assuming the rider straps one on.
Often times, the force of the collision will throw the cyclist from a bike. When this occurs, the cyclist is exposed to the risk of being crushed by an oncoming vehicle. While these accidents are entirely preventable, they are rarely foreseeable for the cyclist. Bicycle accidents frequently occur suddenly and unexpectedly, which leaves the bicyclist with minimal opportunity to respond. A bicycle’s relatively slow rate of speed makes it difficult for a rider to swerve or otherwise avoid a collision when in the immediate path of a motor vehicle.Common Types of Bicycle Accidents
Common types of bicycle accidents that occur in Elk Grove include:
- Drivers failing to maintain traffic laws (drifting between lanes)
- Drivers under the influence
- Careless or distracted drivers
- Pedestrians crossing the street against a red light
- Cracks or bumps in the road
- Lack of adequate road signage
- Drivers executing unsafe turns or lane changes
- Motorists opening their car door to exit without checking for bicycles
If you were injured in a bicycle accident, you might be concerned that you have no insurance to cover your medical bills and that your pain makes it impossible to return to work. California personal injury law seeks to make victims whole by placing the burden of compensation on at-fault parties. Therefore, if a negligent driver, motorcyclist, or pedestrian caused your bicycle accident, the careless or inattentive individual might be responsible for compensating you for the damages you sustained.
Common damages include:
- Past and future medical expenses
- Past and future lost wages
- Emotional distress
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages
The at-fault party depends on the cause of the accident. There are three main causes of bicycle accidents in Elk Grove: (1) roadway design defects, (2) negligent drivers, and (3) bicycle manufacturer defects.
Local governments like Sacramento County and Elk Grove may be liable for bicycle accidents caused by poorly designed, built, or maintained roadways. The government is responsible for adequately and safely constructing public roadways for the safe use of its citizens. When the government fails to exercise reasonable care in providing and maintaining safe roadways and an accident results, the government may be liable for damages. Examples of roadway design defects include potholes, lack of proper signage, and failure to install bike lanes. Since pursuing a legal claim against a public entity involves special procedures and deadlines, bike crash victims should seek legal advice without delay.
Negligent drivers are a leading cause of bicycle accidents. Most bicycle accidents can be attributed to careless or distracted driving. This can include failing to check blind spots, refusing to yield to cyclists, using a cell phone, and speeding. Cyclists injured by negligent drivers can pursue compensation for injuries under personal injury law.
Bicycle manufacturer defects involve the manufacturer of the bicycle improperly designing or assembling the bike. Bicycle defects occur when manufacturers use the wrong parts, fail to install parts or implement a design that is simply unsafe. If you suspect your bicycle was not built safely, our law firm investigates bicycle accidents and pursues claims against manufacturers responsible for unsafe bicycles.
The video below provides a look at some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents and how to prevent them.Elk Grove Bicycle Accident Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, an Elk Grove bicycle accident attorney. If you or someone you love has been injured due to the negligence of another, please call me at 916-694-0002 or 800-404-5400 for free, friendly advice.
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Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 6.29.20]