Bicycle-Car Collisions: An Overview | Cooper & Friedman, Local Attorneys

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Bicycle-Car Collisions: An Overview

Written by Cooper & Friedman PLLC on July 28, 2021
Louisville bike accident attorney

Over 47.5 million Americans bike regularly. Whether it be for leisure, exercise, and/or transportation, biking is an increasingly popular activity, especially in the warmer months.

However, as more cyclists hit the road, so does the chance of accidents. While the rate of collision with motor vehicles is still quite low, these incidences can result in serious injuries, hospital bills, economic damages, and even death. Many bike-car crashes require legal action to sort through accountability and reimbursement of losses.

As in most types of personal injury law, the negligent party is held accountable, whether it be the motorist, the biker, or a government/third-party entity responsible for poor road conditions. That being said, proving a single negligent party can be difficult in bike-car accidents. In fact, “shared liability” is a very common ruling. This means both parties were negligent to some extent. For instance, the motorist may have been driving over the speed limit, but the biker swerved into the wrong lane, causing a collision. Who is at fault? To reach any sort of conclusion, each side must be thoroughly scrutinized for practicing negligence or reckless driving habits.

Fault can be defined within the “duty of care” motorists and bikers are obliged to each other, such as following the rules of the road, like traffic laws and personal safety measures. Not wearing a helmet while biking, using a cellphone, drunk biking, or driving a broken bicycle can all be instances of failing to exercise proper duty of care as a biker. Breaching your duty of care proves that you are at fault, to some extent.

Attention to duty of care increases in some circumstances, such as driving by a school or a place with children on bikes. These instances require hyper-vigilance by motorists, as many children are incapable of being held to the same standards of personal accountability as experienced bikers. Naturally, a careless young child on a bike is different than a careless adult biker.

What To Do If You’re In A Collision

If you collide with a car or bike while biking or driving, it’s important that you immediately contact the police, hospital, or another third-party authority to document the damages incurred. The other party may try to negotiate with you or leave quickly, so it’s imperative that you or someone else records their name, insurance, contact info, etc. Even taking photos with your phone of skid marks or license plates can help build the case.

If you’re mildly injured, you may just be inclined to leave the scene, to go home and recover. This is the last thing you should do. No matter how slight your injuries may seem, if you are injured, it is advisable that you get evaluated by a medical professional. In the heat of an accident, many people assume their injuries aren’t as bad as they actually are. Only a doctor can fully document your condition, which can provide evidence for future compensation including medical bills.

Additionally, contacting an experienced personal injury attorney to assess your subsequent action is important. Attorneys that specialize in bike and pedestrian accidents can help you negotiate with insurance companies, establish the value of harm incurred (such as lost time to bike, lost riding ability, lost wages from time off work, etc.), and build a case.

For additional information or a free case consultation for accidents that happen in the State of Kentucky or in Southern Indiana, contact the experienced team at Cooper and Friedman PLLC today. Call 502-459-7555 to schedule your free case consultation with an attorney.

Posted Under: Bike Accidents, Car Accidents, Personal Injury

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