Conyers Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Bicycles are becoming increasingly popular in Conyers. Not only does biking offer great exercise, but it can also be used as a cheap and environmentally-friendly form of transportation. Unfortunately, biking is not without its risks.
According to research conducted by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), bicycle accidents lead to more than 400,000 emergency room trips each year. While some of those injuries are minor, unfortunately, many others are traumatic. One of the biggest threats facing cyclists is traffic. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that more than 700 Americans are killed in bike accidents each year.
In 2013, 28 cyclists were killed in a motor vehicle accident in the state of Georgia alone. Far too many Georgia drivers simply do not take appropriate care to safely share the road with bicycles. Drivers need to get better; cyclists have just as much right to the road.
At MG Law, our dedicated GA bike accident attorneys have extensive experience handling bike accident injury claims. If you or a family member was hurt in a bicycle crash with a motor vehicle, we are ready to protect your rights. You need to take action now: Call our law firm today for a free legal consultation.
Common Bike Accident Injuries
Bicycle accident injuries vary widely, both in their form and their seriousness. Though, one thing is consistent with all bike accidents: When a vehicle collides with a bike, the cyclist almost always bears the brunt of the impact. Bike riders are inherently exposed to danger.
A crash can lead to catastrophic injuries and even fatalities. Some of the most common bike accident injuries that our Conyers bicycle accident attorneys have seen include:
- Road rash;
- Deep cuts and lacerations;
- Ligament damage;
- Joint damage;
- Muscle tears;
- Dental injuries;
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs);
- Severe psychological injuries;
- Neck injuries;
- Back injuries;
- Broken bones;
- Spinal cord injuries; and
- Partial or total paralysis;
Bicycle Accidents Caused By Road Debris
Road debris can be the cause of vehicle and bicycle accidents. However, road debris poses a very dangerous threat for a cyclist. Often a motor vehicle can usually run over the road debris. Cyclists don’t always get that choice. A bicyclist must quickly react when coming onto a branch or a piece of lumber. A tiny piece of glass or a piece of tire rubber can easily cause a bicycle accident. Darting out into the flow of traffic to avoid debris on the road is legal in most states, but it is not the safest thing to do.
In 2012, 40% of fatal bicycle accidents were rear-ended crashes. Many bicyclists are leery of being hit by a motor vehicle from behind. The only option the bicyclist may have is to run over the road debris. Flat tires and bent wheels or even a wreck with direct impact may pursue. Road debris tends to collect where motor vehicles do not drive such as on the edges and shoulders of the roadway.
Bicyclists Could Be Seriously Injured
Roads that cyclists travel on should regularly be maintained by the county or city. Road debris and gravel does accumulate in the lanes where the bicycle goes. When the small bicycle wheels come in contact with the trash and debris it can and often does cause the bicyclist to lose balance and wreck. In bicycle-friendly areas, it is not uncommon for a bicycle to collide with another bicycle.
The injuries that are suffered in many bicycle accidents necessitate immediate medical attention. Bicyclist injuries can result in injuries to internal organs, broken bones, and severe injuries to the extremities that may lead to permanently diminished function or possible amputation. In pursuance of a bicycle accident claim, the injured could be eligible for compensation for the loss of the capacity to earn a living, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Rehabilitation costs could be extensive.
Establishing and confirming negligence is crucial to finding any financial restoration. Who is responsible for leaving the debris on the roads and highway? Any claim of negligence will depend on who exactly was negligent. If an injured cyclist is to win a claim after an injury involving debris causing a road hazard two elements must be proven.
- Someone violated a duty of care that is owed to the injured bicyclist
- The violated duty of care resulted in the injury to the bicyclist.
In a bicycle accident case involving road hazards in Covington, the negligent party could be a government agency.
Justice served: Bicycle accident victim receives substantial settlement after being hit by a school bus. We strive to secure the compensation our clients deserve.
$450,000 Bicycle Accident Settlement
MG Law litigated and ultimately obtained over $495,000.00 for a cyclist struck by a school bus. Our client was riding his bike on Highway 81, turning left onto Gum Creek Road. The school bus was coming the opposite direction on Highway 81, and cut straight into our client’s path. The resulting collision knocked our client into another vehicle, with him ultimately lying in the street bleeding and unconscious. Our client went to the emergency room via ambulance, where he was treated for broken ribs and a broken foot.
MG Law was retained a few weeks after this occurred, and wasted no time gathering evidence and getting our client the treatment he needed. Pertinent video was obtained, open record requests sent, and affidavits were secured from those who witnessed the bus strike our client. MG Law and secured an orthopedic surgeon for our client, as well as a physical therapist to help him recover from surgery and ensure that he made as complete of a recovery as possible.
At the same time, MG Law attempted to resolve the matter without filing a lawsuit in Court. All attempts to do so were refused, however, and met with claims that our client caused his own injuries. MG Law therefore filed a lawsuit against the school bus. After several months of aggressive litigation, our client was offered more than double what he was offered prior to filing the lawsuit, ultimately settling for $450,000.00.
Negligence From A Private Party
If a bicycle accident is caused by the negligence of a private party, such as cargo falling off a truck on the road, the facts must be investigated to conclude who is the responsible party. Tree limbs, construction materials, or any cargo falling on the road can cause a road hazard. The driver owes a duty to bicyclists to take precautions to keep the load secured.
Motor vehicle operators should understand how to secure a load of cargo and the road securement laws and the penalties for littering. Penalties are in place for failing to comply with regulations. Drivers should regularly inspect their loads and cargo to ensure that they are safe and secure. If the driver is transporting cargo for an employer, the employer’s liability is in question.
If the driver of the vehicle or the employee is acting within the standard procedure of employment, the employer would then be liable. Employers will have higher insurance caps helping the bicyclist’s chance of recovery. The bicyclist must prove the negligent act was committed during the time of employment, rather than just a personal pursuit of the employee.
What to do if you are involved in a Bicycle Accident
Call 911 and wait on the police
It is crucial that you call 911 (or the local police department) to make sure that the police arrive at your scene and file a proper police report, even if you do not believe you are injured. It is easy to be in shock after an accident and not feel an injury until hours after an accident. Also, sometimes minor injuries develop into more serious or permanent conditions.
Staying at the accident scene and waiting on police also ensures you have the contact information of the other driver. Negotiating with the driver is never a good idea. Some drivers may apologize or accept the fault of the accident, but later turn and deny their negligence or even their presence at the accident.
Another advantage of waiting for the police to arrive at the scene of the bicycle accident is that the police might go ahead and ticket the driver. This could prove useful if you need to file a claim or settle a case with the insurance company.
Tell your side of the story
When the police arrive, be sure to speak up and tell your side of the story. Sometimes, a police officer might take a statement from the person driving the car and neglect to talk to the cyclist. Make an effort to speak with the police officer and make sure he or she takes your statement.
Remember to report your injuries, also, even if they still seem minor at the time. You never know when those injuries will develop into something more serious and it’s better to be safe than sorry. If the police refuse to include your side of the story in the statement, you can always ask to have the report amended later.
Gather contact information
You need to obtain the name of the automobile driver, along with his or her phone number, address, driver’s license number, car tag number, and insurance information. If possible, gather names and contact information from everyone at the scene, especially those who witnessed the accident. The police report may not include all of this information. If you are injured and cannot gather this information on your own, ask a bystander to help you gather the information.
Document the events
Take a moment to recount what happened in the accident. How did the accent happen? Where was it? When was it? What were the road, traffic, and weather conditions like? As soon as possible, write down all of this information for your records. You may need this information later.
Seek Medical Care
You need to seek medical care as soon as possible after the bicycle accident, even if your injuries seem minor. If the injuries do become a larger issue, seeking medical attention early will be proof that you sustained injuries in the accident. The medical records will document the injuries and the extent of your injuries at the time.
Also, take photos of any injuries you sustained after the accident. Keep a journal of your symptoms and keep the journal up to date with notes and photos of your injuries.
Preserve the evidence
If your bicycle or other property was damaged in the accident, do not fix anything or have it inspected. Take photos of any equipment that was damaged (bike, helmet, clothing, etc), and keep it in the exact same state it was on the day of your accident. Do not wash your clothing. Be prepared to send your equipment to your lawyer if requested and no one else.
Seek an attorney
Accidents involving both cars and bikes are a complex legal situation. You will want to seek out a Conyers bicycle accident lawyer who understands bicycle laws and has handled bicycle accident cases in Georgia. We can advise you on what to do after your bicycle accident, negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, or represent you in a lawsuit if needed.
Our experienced lawyers also handle clients with other types of injury cases, including:
- Motorbike Accidents,
- Auto Accidents,
- Trucking Accidents,
- Child Injuries,
- Crosswalk Accidents,
- Drunk Driving Accidents,
- Mass Torts,
- Trip and Fall Accidents,
- Wrongful Death,
- Pedestrian Accidents,
- Premises Liability,
- Uber/Lyft Accidents,
- Dog Attack,
- Traumatic Brain Injury,
- Burn Injury, and
- Catastrophic Injury.
Contact our Conyers bicycle accident lawyers now.
Who is at Fault for a Bicycle Accident in Conyers?
Georgia is a comparative fault jurisdiction. In the state, the fault is based on negligence. Essentially, that means that any party who was to blame for an accident, or who shared partial responsibility for an accident, can be held liable for the resulting damages. As we know, accidents involving automobiles and bicycles can lead to severe injury and death.
Similar to other auto accidents, we must evaluate which party was negligent in a bicycle accident, and to what degree. Both drivers and cyclists are required to obey the rules of the road, so we have to analyze the circumstances in-depth to determine culpability.
Driver negligence comes in many different forms. Some of the most common examples include:
speeding, running a stop sign or traffic light, drifting into the bike lane, or otherwise distracted driving (texting, for example). Of course, riders can also share the blame for a collision. Some of the most common examples of cyclist negligence include: riding the wrong way on a one-way street, running a stop sign, and turning abruptly into traffic.
Ultimately, determining who was at fault for a bike crash requires investigation into the specific circumstances surrounding the collision. As you might imagine, analyzing a stressful situation like this, which likely happened very quickly, is challenging. This is something best left to MG Law. We know the ins and outs of Georgia driving regulations, so you can trust us to get you what’s right.
MG LAW WANTS TO BRING SAFER BIKE PARKING TO OUR COMMUNITY
Conyers Bicycle Accident Victims Deserve Fair Compensation
Once you establish liability, your bicycle accident injury claim will move on to the issue of damages. Far too often, injured bike accident victims overlook this critically important step of the personal injury claims process. In Georgia, victims are owed financial compensation for the full value of their damages. In practice, the big insurance companies often make recovering fair compensation extremely difficult.
To do so, you will need to work with a qualified Conyers bicycle accident attorney who can ensure that your claim is well-documented and properly presented. At MG Law, we can help you hold the insurance company accountable. You may be entitled to money for:
- Damage to your bike;
- Ambulance fees;
- Emergency room bills;
- All other medical expenses;
- Long-term disability (LTD);
- Lost current and future wages;
- Pain and suffering;
- Mental distress;
- Loss of limb;
- Loss of life enjoyment; and
- Wrongful death.