Can You Recover Compensation for Your Bicycle Accident Injuries?
Thousands of people throughout Orange County ride bicycles on a daily basis, and Southern California’s famously warm climate allows people to ride all year long. While bicycling is an undeniably healthy and eco-friendly way to get around, it also exposes riders to a risk of extremely serious injuries.
When bicyclists collide with cars and trucks, it’s rarely the motorist who leaves the scene of the accident hurt. Some of the injuries that bicyclists can sustain in crashes include:
• Broken bones
• Severe lacerations
• Facial fractures
• Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
• Spinal cord injuries (SCIs)
These and other bicycle accident injuries often leave victims with significant economic and non-economic losses. These typically include medical expenses, lost income, lost quality of life, and physical and emotional pain and suffering. In cases where cyclists are left with long-term disabilities, these expenses can drag on for years or even decades. As a result, it’s critical that injured bicyclists recover compensation for their injuries whenever possible.
When Accidents are the Result of Negligence, Victims Can Recover Compensation
Under California law, people who are injured by the negligence of others are entitled to compensation for their injuries. In the context of car accidents, negligence occurs when a driver fails to use the degree of care that would ordinarily be used by a reasonable driver in the same or similar circumstances. Typical examples of driver negligence that often leads to serious, injury-causing bicycle accidents include the following:
• Distracted driving
• Opening doors without checking side-view mirrors
• Following too closely
• Failing to give bicyclists adequate room when passing
• Failing to yield the right of way
• Impaired driving
• Driving while fatigued
Protecting Your Rights after a Bicycle Accident
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident caused by a careless driver, there are certain steps that you should take to protect your legal rights. First of all, if you are seriously injured, seek emergency medical care and go to the hospital immediately, as your physical well-being is the most critical issue. If you can stay at the scene of the accident, get the driver’s name and insurance information and try and get contact information from people who may have witnessed the accident. Take a picture of the aftermath and your injuries. Next, even if you do not think you are seriously hurt, see a healthcare professional and undergo a complete medical evaluation. This step is essential both to ensure that your injuries are correctly identified and treated and that there is an official medical record of detailing your injuries. Finally, do NOT accept any settlement offers you may receive and retain an attorney to represent you as soon as you can.
Call The Law Offices of Brent. W. Caldwell Today to Schedule a Free Case Evaluation
If you have been hurt in a bicycle accident in or around Orange County, you should speak to a lawyer as soon as you can. To schedule a free case evaluation with attorney Brent Caldwell, call our office today at 714-625-8914 or contact us online.