Bicycle Accident Causes and Injuries
Our Seattle Bicycle Accident Law Firm Can Explain Your Possible Legal Options
When it comes to bicycle and automobile accidents, it’s often wrongfully assumed the bicyclist is at fault. This is actually pretty far from the truth — and motorists are often responsible. Cyclists are difficult to see, and motorists may not be paying attention or actively looking for nearby cyclists or pedestrians. For instance, a motorist may cause a collision by failing to yield to a cyclist. There are other causes of bicycle accidents that do not involve motorists. Potholes and dangerous road conditions may also cause a bicycle accident.
Injured cyclists can suffer major injuries that cost they and their families millions of dollars in damages. Brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and broken bones may lead to extensive financial and emotional costs. In fact, the estimated lifetime expenses of a 25-year-old with a complete C1 spinal cord injury are greater than $4.5 million. Even a minor impact from a car on a bicycle will have significant injuries, far beyond what would occur in a car-on-car accident. Herschensohn Law PLLC handles all types of bicycle accidents.
If you’ve been injured in such an accident, it’s time to get in touch with a Seattle bicycle accident law firm for assistance and representation. Depending on the circumstances of your accident, you may be able to secure compensation against the party or parties who caused your damages. A successful settlement or verdict can help pay for the expenses associated with your injury or loss.
Causes of Bicycle Accidents
While statistics show the overall number of bicycle accidents in the United States is on the decline, the number of fatal accidents is on the rise. In 2015, more than 45,000 accidents were reported. While this number was down 5,000 accidents from the previous year, the number of fatal accidents had increased by more than 12 percent.
Causes of the increase may be attributed to drivers who don’t use caution when sharing the road and cities that haven’t yet implemented infrastructure changes that could support safe biking.
Additional causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Driver inattention. Because drivers are becoming more and more distracted behind the wheel, they often miss bicyclists in the roadway.
- Failure to yield. This happens all too often when drivers don’t understand their responsibilities on the roadway. When automobile drivers fail to yield, bicyclists get hurt.
- Rider inattention. Because bicyclists have little to protect them from automobiles, they are responsible for navigating the roadway with caution. However, an increasing number of riders are listening to music, using a smartphone, or otherwise allowing themselves to be distracted.
- Dangerous conditions. The roadblocks that automobiles usually ignore — potholes, train tracks, and flat tires — aren’t easy for bicyclists to ignore. Instead, they must navigate around them. This can lead to confusion on the road and, in extreme circumstances, a collision.
- Riding at night. When bicyclists ride at night, it can be difficult for drivers to see them. This can end in serious, and even fatal, injuries to the bicyclist.
Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
Common injuries sustained by bicyclists include:
- Road rash
- Broken or shattered bones
- Brain injuries
- Severe bruising
- Spinal cord injuries
If you’ve suffered from any of these injuries due to a reckless or negligent driver, contact a Seattle bicycle accident law firm for assistance and representation in your personal injury lawsuit.
Negligence and Recklessness in Bicycle Accident Lawsuits
Both bicyclists and drivers are required to follow the rules of the road, including following all posted traffic laws and exercising care in regard to the safety of themselves and others on the roadway.
When a bicyclist believes a motorist is responsible for injuries suffered in an accident, the outcome of their personal injury lawsuit depends on three questions:
- Did the motorist owe the bicyclist a certain duty of care? The answer to this question is nearly always yes, as all drivers on the roadway must preserve their duty to other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians at all times.
- Did the motorist betray that duty of care?
- Did that betrayal result directly in the injuries suffered by the bicyclist?
Contact an Experienced Seattle Bicycle Accident Attorney for Representation
Have you or a loved one been injured in an accident caused by the carelessness and recklessness of a motorist? Our law firm has a history of successfully representing our clients in bicycle accident lawsuits. In one recent case, our law firm recovered a $245,000 bicycle accident settlement for our client. Contact our Seattle bicycle accident attorney for assistance and representation by calling (206) 588-4344 or using our online case review form.