Tracy, CA saw at least 20 traffic collisions involving bicycles in 2019 according to UC Berkeley. Bicyclists are extremely vulnerable to injury or death from a collision since they lack the protection of vehicle surrounding them. Over 100 bicyclists are killed and over 10,000 are injured in California every year according to California’s DMV. Other drivers’ insurance companies are not your friends and they’ll do everything in their power to pay you as little as possible to cover for your bicycle accident injuries. This is why you need experienced bicycle accident attorneys like the attorneys at Nadrich & Cohen on your side if you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident. We’ll protect your legal rights, fight for you against the insurance companies and ensure you get the largest possible financial recovery.
Bicycle Accident Types
There are many different types of bicycle accidents. Common types include:
- Dooring: “Dooring” accidents happen when drivers open their car door as cyclists are passing by, causing the cyclist to collide with the car door. This commonly occurs on streets with parallel parking for cars and bike lanes running parallel to the parking spots, right next to them.
- Exiting private drives: These accidents occur when a bike or vehicle fails to look both ways before exiting a driveway, sidewalk, side street or private alley.
- Cycling against traffic: Cyclists may feel safer cycling against traffic since they can see the oncoming traffic, but almost one fourth of all bicycle accidents occur while cycling against traffic. These collisions make up a large amount of bicycle accidents involving severe injuries or death since they entail a cyclist colliding head on with a vehicle.
- Sideswipes: These occur when the side of a vehicle collides with the side of a cyclist. This can happen when cyclists ride in the left side of a bike lane, but riding in the right side of a bike lane can increase a cyclist’s risk of being doored.
- Cyclists getting rear-ended: This type of accident occurs often when visibility is low, such as at night or in the fog. Drivers who can’t see a cyclist until it is too late often can’t stop in time.
Bicycle Accident Injuries
Bicycle injuries can be extremely severe because cyclists lack physical protection. This can lead to a direct impact between a vehicle and a human body. Bicycle accident injuries can include:
- Broken legs
- Broken collarbone
- Dislocated joints
- Damaged nerves
- Broken hands
- Brain and head injuries
- Jaw and dental injuries
- Back and neck injuries
Bicycle Accident Causes
Most bicycle accidents occur because of drivers failing to follow the law or be attentive to their surroundings. Causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Distracted drivers
- Drunk drivers
- Failing to obey signals, street signs or traffic laws
- Road rage
- Defective roads
- Bad weather
How To Avoid Bike Injuries
Accidents are not always preventable, but there are steps cyclists can take to avoid accidents and avoid injuries resulting from accidents. These include:
- Always wearing a helmet
- Obeying the laws of the road
- Using hand signals when slowing down, stopping or turning
- Wearing reflective clothing and using a bicycle light at night
- Wearing bright clothing
- Using rear-view mirrors
- Riding with traffic instead of against it
What Do I Do After A Bicycle Accident?
You should do the following after a bicycle accident:
- Get medical attention: This is the most important thing you can do after a bicycle accident. Do this even if you don’t think you’re injured. Adrenaline after an accident can often mask the pain of injuries and some injuries don’t show themselves for hours or days after an accident. Failure to receive diagnosis and treatment of injuries quickly can negatively affect your ability to obtain compensation for your injuries.
- Evidence collection: The more evidence you have in a personal injury case, the better. Gather the license plate numbers, insurance information and contact information of any drivers involved in the accident. Photograph any bicycle damage or injuries you’ve received. Photograph your surroundings, especially road hazards, road signs and street signs. Collect the contact information of any witnesses present.
- Contact the police: Do this as long as you don’t urgently require medical care. Police reports can provide important evidence in personal injury cases.
- Contact a bicycle accident lawyer: Adjusters for the insurance company representing the driver who caused your accident are trained to minimize their payout to you. They will offer you a quick settlement which will be very tempting, but this settlement will almost certainly be much smaller than what you’re entitled to. They are also very skilled at baiting you into saying things which allow them to pay you less. It is therefore vital that you hire a bicycle accident lawyer who can protect your rights and talk with the insurance company for you. Insurance companies typically won’t offer fair settlements to accident victims lacking lawyers and hiring a lawyer eliminates the risk of you accidentally saying something incriminating to the insurance company.
Can I Ride On The Sidewalk In Tracy?
Tracy city ordinances state that nobody except children under the age of eight may ride bicycles on the sidewalk in Tracy. However, you may still be eligible for financial compensation if you were injured while riding your bicycle on the sidewalk. Your technical violation of a city ordinance does not give drivers a free pass to strike you by driving inappropriately.
The Tracy Bicycle Accident Gurus
The experienced bicycle accident lawyers at Nadrich & Cohen have been representing bicycle accident victims since 1990. We are contingency fee lawyers, meaning you will never owe us out of pocket for our services. Call us today at (209) 937-0888 for a free consultation if you or a loved one was injured or killed in a bicycle accident. You can also talk with a live chat specialist, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the free case evaluation form.