Woodland Bicycle Accident Lawyer
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more and more Americans regularly ride a bicycle. Whether for commuting to work, running errands, exercising, or just for fun, riding a bike is a great way to get around and offers riders a unique experience with plenty of fresh air. However, riding a bicycle also comes with serious safety risks. Cyclists lack protection and are liable to receive significant injuries in the event of an accident.
NHTSA statistics report that, on average, over 50,000 people in the United States are injured yearly in bicycle accidents. Additionally, over 800 people lose their lives after a cycling collision. Unfortunately, a large percentage of these traumatic accidents take place in California. The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) recently released a report that found California a perilous state for cyclists. The report had several troubling findings, including the following:
- California is one of the leading states for bicyclist deaths per capita.
- Compared to the national average, Bicyclist fatalities accounted for about twice the number of collision-related deaths in California.
- Recent years have seen a significant increase in fatal bicycle/vehicle accidents across the state.
Although California has laws to protect cyclists and make it easier to share the road with motorists, around 30 percent of bicycle collisions involve a motor vehicle. These crashes are usually caused by careless errors made by drivers. Some of the more common ways that drivers cause accidents involving cyclists include:
- Failing to stop at a stop sign or red light.
- Opening vehicle doors without looking for oncoming bicyclists.
- Driving under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
- Failing to check for cyclists before changing lanes or making a turn.
- Failing to give cyclists the right-of-way.
- Driving while distracted.
As you probably expect, cyclists are almost always the party that suffers more severe injuries when bicycles collide with motor vehicles. Due to the significant difference in weight between bikes and sedans, SUVs, trucks, and other vehicles, cyclists often suffer life-altering trauma when a crash occurs. Some of the severe injuries that cyclists are liable to suffer include:
- Bone fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord trauma
- Nerve damage
- Amputation injuries
- Head injuries (such as contusions, concussions, and skull fractures)
Many of these injuries drastically affect people's lives and can take years to recover. In some cases, the symptoms of these injuries may never go away completely, meaning that injured individuals need a lifetime of medical care.
This short video by AAA provides valuable tips for safe cycling.Taking Action
If you or someone you love was injured in a cycling accident, taking legal action as soon as possible is vitally important. The sooner an attorney begins collecting evidence and preparing your case, the more capable they are of preventing responsible parties from disclaiming responsibility. Even if you are unsure whether or not you need legal representation, a Woodland bicycle accident lawyer with experience handling injury cases will help you understand what you may be owed. Most lawyers will offer you a free consultation where you can get valuable information about the details of your case.Recovering Financially After a Bicycle Accident
Suffering a catastrophic injury often means expensive medical bills and lost income, and many people are even left unable to return to their job. However, most of the expenses related to your accident can be recovered in a personal injury claim. Recoverable personal injury damages include:
- Pain and Suffering (including therapy and treatment for emotional trauma such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder).
- Lost wages and/or income as well as loss of earning potential.
- Repairs to your bicycle and any other damaged property.
- Medical costs related to the accident include physical therapy, medications, surgeries, and more.
Many people are surprised that they must prove that they were injured and that the defendant was negligent to receive compensation. This is understandable because cyclists, in many cases, did nothing wrong and were simply enjoying riding their bikes when a reckless driver struck them. However, the civil justice system has specific requirements for filing personal injury claims, and if you are missing a requirement, your chances of receiving compensation are limited. These requirements are:
- Defendant Owed a Duty of Care
- The Defendant Breached their Duty of Care
- You Received Injuries
- Those Injuries were Proximately Caused by the Defendant's Negligence
These requirements must be met based on the preponderance of case evidence. This means that the evidence needs to tilt slightly in your favor to obtain financial compensation through a personal injury claim. This is another excellent example of why hiring a skilled, experienced, competent Woodland bicycle accident lawyer is essential. A good attorney will know how to convince courts to award you total compensation. While most cases don't go to trial and are settled in private negotiations, preparing a solid case is essential in convincing insurers to pay you a fair amount for your losses.Woodland Bicycle Accident Lawyers
Please contact our injury attorneys today at (530) 392-9400 or (800) 404-5400 to get our free, friendly legal advice. We are ready to begin helping you and your family obtain the financial recovery you deserve.
For more information, read through the Verdicts and Settlements our personal injury lawyers obtained on our clientele's behalf.
Editor's Note: updated [cha 5.24.23] Photo: depositphotos.com ms cha [cs 914]