Belleville Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Win Just Compensation for Your Injuries and Get Your Life Back
As many as 45,000 people are injured in bicycle accidents each year. The most common cause of these accidents is….you guessed it, cars. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, being struck by the front of a vehicle causes around 79% of cyclist deaths. Cars also cause more non-fatal bicycle crashes than any other factor. When you were injured by the negligence or recklessness of a driver, you might be entitled to compensatory damages.
Drivers have a duty to be reasonably careful on the road, and to respect pedestrians, motorcyclists, and bicyclists. When a driver speeds, runs a stop sign, or swerves into a bike lane, he or she is breaching this duty.
Driver Errors That Cause Crashes
Data from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety shows that failing to yield right-of-way is the most common cause of bike-car collisions (NPR). Bicycles are considered vehicles, and it is up to car drivers to yield to them when they have the right-of-way. If, for example, a car and a bicycle approach a four-way stop sign at the same time and the bicyclist is to the car’s right, the car needs to yield, as the bicyclist has the right-of-way.
Left-turn collisions account for almost half of all bike-car crashes. In this case, cars either fail to see the bicyclist altogether or fail to respect right-of-way and turn left into the path of the bicycle. Bicycle-car crashes also occur when car drivers fail to check their blind spots and turn right into the path of the bike, and when drivers do not pay attention to a bicyclist’s changing lane signals and hit the bike from behind.
There are common bike-car crashes that don’t even take place on the road. Drivers looking to exit a parking lot often fail to check for bicyclists as they attempt to enter the road. Bicyclists are even hit when drivers open their doors to get out as a bicyclist is riding by (which is commonly referred to as “dooring”).
Proving Liability in Bicycle Crash Cases
The truth of the matter is that bicyclists are considered “at fault” for bike-car crashes almost as often as drivers. This means that a driver’s liability for an accident is not a given just because he or she has the bigger, stronger vehicle.
Because of this, it is important to establish the facts so that you and your attorneys can work to prove liability when you’ve been hit by a car. Here are a few tips to remember:
- Never admit fault to anyone, even if you think you might share the blame. Insurance companies and the other party will most definitely use this against you down the road.
- Seek medical attention for any injuries. Not only is this important for your recovery and overall well-being, but it also helps document the unfortunate results of the crash so that you can be compensated.
- Don’t agree to any kind of settlement or sign documentation before you’ve contacted your lawyer. An insurance company or opposing attorney is going to offer you a low settlement in the hopes that you’ll take it. Your attorney is there to ensure you receive more than the bare minimum.
Getting Compensation for Injuries
Although similar to car accidents in many ways, bicycle accidents have more serious injuries than car accidents, as bikes do not provide as much protection.
Your damages usually stem from the sum of your medical expenses, lost wages, cost of your bike at the time of the crash and, in some cases, your pain and suffering. Of course, the specific circumstances surrounding potential damages vary from case to case.
Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your case, you should not be left to deal with medical bills and lost income alone. A knowledgeable Belleville personal injury attorney will help you look beyond the immediate need to pay medical bills, and fight to get you additional compensation for future losses, like changes in your ability to do your job, or to your ability to enjoy activities you used to love.
At Hipskind & McAninch, LLC, we can help you get your life back.
“Brady was very easy to talk to and I felt very comfortable. He was very honest and realistic during our free consultation and also did some research about our situation afterward to help us make an informed decision at no cost. We decided to not proceed because of our specific situation, but would not hesitate to go to him in the future if needed. Very pleased with our experience.”
– Rebecka Feeley
We offer free consultations and, because we work on a contingency basis, you won’t pay a dime until we win. The free consultation gives us a chance to understand your case, and it gives you a chance to see if we’re a good fit. Our contingency-based fees give you the freedom to consult an experienced Belleville personal injury lawyer without paying up front – after all, you have enough to worry about.
As a client, we’ll offer you 24/7 access to partners John Hipskind and Brady McAninch’s cell phones. Legal emergencies don’t always wait for business hours – and neither do we. Call us day or night with any questions you might have, or emergencies that come back. We’ll answer and be there when you need us.