Chico Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Bicycling is arguably more popular than ever before. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has reported that an increasing number of Americans are regularly using their bikes. Whether you are running errands, getting exercise, commuting, or just enjoying the ride, riding a bike is an enjoyable way to get from A to B. However, navigating the roads on a bike also poses safety risks. Cyclists do not have the same protection that vehicle occupants do. Because of this, cyclists are liable to suffer serious injuries if they are involved in a crash.
NHTSA has also reported that more than 50,000 people in the US suffer injuries in bicycle accidents every year. In addition to these injuries, more than 800 suffer trauma that cost them their lives. Bicycling is particularly popular in California and, unfortunately, many of these accidents happen in our state. The Governors Highway Safety Association has released data that shows California is an especially dangerous state for bikers. Their findings showed that:
- Bicyclist fatalities in California are about twice as common in the state as the national average.
- California is a leading state in bicyclist deaths per person.
- Recent years in California have seen a steady increase in the number of fatality accidents between vehicles and bicycles.
California has laws to protect bicyclists and make it safer for bicycles to share roadways with motor vehicles. However, around 30 percent of all bicycle crashes involve a car. These collisions are most often caused by drivers making careless mistakes. There are many ways that motorists can cause bicycle accidents. Some of the most common include the following:
- Driving while texting or distracted.
- Failing to yield the right-of-way.
- Failing to check for bicyclists before turning or changing lanes.
- Opening doors in front of cyclists.
- Failing to properly stop at red lights or stop signs.
- Driving while under the influence of mind-altering substances.
Bicyclists are almost always the party that suffers the most severe trauma in a crash with a motor vehicle. Because of the major weight difference between cars and bikes, cyclists are liable to sustain a wide range of severe injuries. Many of these injuries can have long-lasting or even permanent effects and significantly change the way injured parties live their lives. Some serious injuries that cyclists often sustain are:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Nerve damage
- Spinal cord injuries
- Extremity injuries
- Back trauma
- Bone fractures
- Amputation injuries
- Skull fractures
Watch YouTube Video: Biking Safely - Safe Cycling Tips for Adults. The below video from AAA includes valuable tips for making sure you stay safe while biking on California roads.Taking Action
After suffering injuries in a cycling accident, taking legal action as soon as you can is crucial. The sooner that a lawyer can begin collecting evidence and working on your case, the more effectively they can ensure that you are provided with the recompense you deserve. Often, liable parties will try to investigate an accident themselves and obscure significant evidence. Having an attorney on your side right away can prevent this from happening.
Many people aren’t sure whether or not they need a lawyer for their case. It’s true that not every case requires an attorney. However, it is always a good idea to contact an experienced Chico bicycle accident lawyer to know what your next steps should be. Most lawyers will give you a free phone consultation where you can learn the information you need to know to begin the process of claiming damages. If you would like to speak with me about the details of your case, I would be happy to talk with you about your options. You can get in touch with me at my local phone number (530) 392-9400.Financial Recovery After Bicycle Collisions
Suffering catastrophic injuries can mean facing a series of steep medical bills. For many, paying these bills is even more difficult because their injury has made them unable to continue their careers. However, most of the damages related to your crash can be recovered by filing a personal injury claim. Damages that can be recovered in personal injury claims include:
- Loss of income, wages, and/or earning potential.
- Repairs to the damaged property including your bicycle.
- Medical expenses such as surgery, medication, physical therapy, ambulance fees, and more.
- Pain and suffering damages.
Often, people are surprised when they discover that they need to prove both that a driver is negligent and that a crash caused them injuries to claim compensation. This surprise is understandable because, in most cases, cyclists didn’t do anything wrong. After being struck by a reckless driver, it can be shocking to learn that you need to prove they injured you. However, California’s civil justice system has requirements in place for personal injury claims. If you are not able to meet these requirements, your ability to claim compensation is affected. These requirements are:
- The defendant owed a duty of care.
- That duty of care was breached.
- You suffered injuries.
- The injuries were caused by the defendant.
These requirements essentially mean that the evidence needs to favor you slightly for you to obtain compensation. This is another good example of why having the help of an experienced and competent Chico bicycle accident attorney is vital to claim damages. A skilled lawyer will be able to convince courts to award you the full amount of repayment that you deserve. While the majority of cases do not go to trial, it is important to have a strong argument prepared in case a settlement can’t be reached.Chico Bicycle Accident Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Chico bicycle accident lawyer. Bicycle accidents can often involve severe injuries. If a bicycle collision hurt you or someone important to you, please call me so I can provide you with free, friendly case advice. I am available at both my toll-free and local number (800) 404-5400 or (530) 392-9400.
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Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 10.24.19]