Drivers failing to see a cyclist making a left turn is one of the most common causes of auto vs. bicycle accidents. Another common accident occurs when drivers passing cyclists on the left turn right into the cyclist’s path. Cyclists need to be constantly on alert for drivers’ blind spots, drivers pulling out in traffic, and people opening doors into the cyclist’s path. When riding by parked cars, there is always the danger of a collision with an unexpectedly opened car door. This accident occurs so often, it has its own name—it is called “being doored.”
Many bicycle accidents occur near driveways or parking lots. Bicyclists must be extremely careful to avoid riding into the path of drivers who are backing up motor vehicles or exiting parking lots.
To avoid these accidents, the most important safety tip bicyclists should observe is to make themselves as visible as possible and never assume drivers can see you. The consequences of an auto vs. bicycle are serious, so bicyclists must always anticipate—and be prepared for—distracted or unobservant drivers.
Observing traffic signals and rules of the road
- Avoid passing stopped or slow-moving cars on the right
- Do not creep into an intersection to get a head start when the light changes
- In slow-moving traffic and near parked cars, look several cars ahead
- As much as possible, avoid roads with numerous parking lot exits
- Always wear a helmet
But even the most careful bicyclist can be involved in an accident. Victims of bike accidents who suffer serious injuries need legal representation as soon as possible. You may need help getting compensated for your injuries. You have medical bills that must be paid, a bike that needs to be replaced or repaired, you might have lost wages. Be careful not to settle with insurance companies before your injuries are fully evaluated. Do not let insurance adjusters convince you to sign a settlement of claim statement without finding out first what happens if, weeks or months from now, you start to experience symptoms associated with your bicycle injuries, such as
- numbness in your fingers, arms or legs
- debilitating neck or back pain
- cognitive disorientation
If you sign a settlement agreement too soon, chance are you will not be covered for future care or lost wages if symptoms manifest after signing the agreement. Estey & Bomberger will help you reach your goals, and help you avoid making unnecessary compromises as you pursue your personal injury claim.
Bicycle accidents, especially in populated urban areas, are usually caused by automobiles. But sometimes bicyclists are injured as the result of mechanical failure. Traffic signals can malfunction, brakes on a motor vehicle can fail, and the bicycle itself might be defective. Weather conditions are another factor in cyclist accidents. And then, there are roadway hazards—pot holes or an obstructed bike lanes, for example. Serious bike injuries sometimes include
- traumatic brain injuries
- herniated or bulging discs
- broken or lost limbs
- nerve damage
As in most injury accidents, it is not always readily obvious what caused an accident, and bicycle accidents are no different. Expert witnesses and accident reconstructionists are usually required to demonstrate liability. But regardless of what caused the accident, the injuries can be severe and life changing. Serious injuries require the best medical care available, and the peace of mind that legal matters are being cared for by professionals with a proven record obtaining maximum compensation awards for personal injury clients.
Seek Our Riverside Bicycle Accident Attorneys
If you or someone you care for has been injured in a bicycle accident in Riverside County, or you have lost a loved one in a bike accident, contact us to schedule a free consultation. We will evaluate your legal options and provide you with our assessment at no charge. At Estey & Bomberger, we never charge our clients a fee until we win their case. Contact us in Riverside today! 951-543-9020