Bicycling is enjoyable and can also be an excellent way to get around town. But injuries from bicycle accidents can be very serious. There is always a risk of serious injury, and even death, when bicyclists try to “share the road” with motor vehicles. If you or a loved one has suffered this type of injury, you should talk to a St Petersburg bicycle accident lawyer who has handled these kinds of cases before and knows how to pursue the compensation you deserve. A distinguished personal injury lawyer can begin preparing your case on your behalf.
Bicycle Accident Causes
One of the most common causes of bicycle accidents is the drivers of cars and other vehicles failing to see, or yield the right of way to, bicyclists. These incidents occur because drivers are distracted (talking on cell phones or texting), driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or just not being aware of the bicyclists that may be right in front of them. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 47,000 bicycle-related injuries and over 650 deaths were reported in 2011. That is more than two percent of all motorcycle vehicle accidents. Even worse, the percentage has been rising every year. Drivers of motor vehicles are supposed to share the road with bicyclists.
The traffic safety agency advises drivers of motor vehicles to “allow at least three feet clearance when passing a bicyclist on the road, look for cyclists before opening a car door or pulling out from a parking space, and yield to cyclists at intersections and as directed by signs and signals.” The traffic safety agency also warns motor vehicle drivers to “be especially watchful for cyclists when making turns, either left or right.”
Bicycle Accident Injuries
Because bicyclists are so vulnerable compared to the drivers who are inside of motor vehicles, they can get hurt very badly – broken bones, brain damage, paralysis, and even death. An injury that results in paralysis is devastating. Losing the ability to get around on your own can severely limit the enjoyment of life and the capacity to take advantage of life’s opportunities.
In addition, the medical expenses brought on with these sorts of injuries – both in terms of immediate recovery and long-term rehabilitation – can be enormous, frequently exceeding the capacity of ordinary insurance policies to cover them making it important that a St Petersburg bike accident attorney is consulted.
Examining the Evidence from a Bicycle Accident
In any case involving vehicle collisions, it is important to look carefully at what happened in order to determine the cause of the accident. A St Petersburg bicycle accident attorney will want to determine whether the other person was driving carelessly or in a distracted manner. When considering liability, it may be relevant to note if there a design defect in the victim’s bicycle, or another vehicle involved in the collision. In other words, did all the safety equipment function adequately?
Seeking Medical Attention
Getting a complete medical examination promptly is crucial. The injured parties will need to make the connection between the crash and any subsequent health problems they have suffered. Even with modern bicycle helmets and other safety gear, these kinds of accidents can have huge physical, emotional, and psychological consequences. The damages to the victim, both physical and financial, could continue for the rest of a person’s life. That is why it is so important to pursue a settlement or jury award that will be able to provide real support. Experienced St Petersburg bicycle accident lawyers will listen to your story and then begin work getting you the compensation that you are entitled to.