Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Bicycle Accident Litigation: What You Need to Know
Few activities are more enjoyable than a quiet bike ride on the roads and trails of Connecticut. Yet even the most cautious cyclist can encounter trouble — especially when those with whom they share the road are negligent.
Let’s take a closer look at bicycle safety and how an experienced attorney can help you navigate the legal system in the event of an accident.
Bicycle Accidents By the Numbers
According to data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the risk to cyclists has grown in recent years. A 2019 study released by the NHTSA showed that 2018 was the deadliest year in more than two decades for cyclists. A total of 857 cyclists were killed and thousands more were seriously injured.
On average, two cyclists and 17 pedestrians are killed every day in the United States. These numbers come even as federal, state and local officials work to reduce traffic collisions. Despite the expansion of dedicated bike lanes and the mitigation of dangerous intersections, cyclist deaths and accidents keep rising.
Many observers cite three reasons for this phenomenon: Larger vehicles on the road, more distracted drivers and more people taking up cycling.
Staying Safer on the Road
To reduce the odds of a serious cycling injury, it’s important to follow some smart safety protocols, including the following:
- Wear a properly fitted helmet from a trusted manufacturer.
- Minimize the risk of crashes. This means understanding where (busy intersections) and when (evening/dusk hours) most collisions occur. It’s also important to maintain strong situational awareness when riding a bike. Use your peripheral vision to monitor for possible threats.
- Never use alcohol when riding a bike.
- Always wear appropriate safety gear. This includes helmets, lights, reflectors, bright clothes etc.
- Tie and tuck your shoelaces.
- Plan your route in advance and choose roads with less traffic and slower posted speeds.
- Consider wearing a GoPro camera.
What to Do if You Are in a Cycling Collision
If you are involved in a traffic collision, it’s imperative that you take some immediate steps to protect yourself.
First, if you are able to do so, call for medical assistance if necessary and ensure that you (and if possible) your bike are not left vulnerable in the middle of the road.
Next, in the event of a serious collision, contact law enforcement and ask for a copy of the accident report.
Obtain information from the at fault driver such as their name, license number and insurance company.
You’ll also need to gather witness statements from anyone who saw the collision.
Document the scene with videos and photos.
Preserve your bicycle, your clothes, shoes and other gear.
If you require medical attention, keep a running tally of your medical bills and any medical expenses.
If you are out of work due to the accident, keep track of your lost wages.
Finally, you may wish to contact an experienced attorney to help protect your rights. Negotiating with an insurance company is no easy task for most people. An attorney can help ensure that your rights are protected and that you are treated with fairness and dignity.
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