Bicyclists occupy the space between motorists and pedestrians. On the one hand, when you ride your bicycle, you are operating a vehicle that gives you significantly more speed and power than you have when you are on foot. On the other, your bicycle is powered purely by your own strength and energy, rather than that of an engine. Because of this gray area, bicyclists often find themselves having to either ride in the road with cars and other motor vehicles or riding on the sidewalk, swerving around pedestrians, skaters, runners, and individuals walking their dogs. There are a lot of ways an individual can suffer from an injury when riding a bicycle, many of which are due to others’ negligence.
If you are injured in a bicycle accident, you could be entitled to receive monetary compensation for your damages through a personal injury claim with the help of an Austin bicycle accident attorney.
What Causes Bicycle Accidents?
There are many factors that can cause an individual to be involved in a bicycle accident. These factors can be due to an individual’s negligence, a poorly-maintained roadway or bicycle path, or a flaw in the bicycle’s design or a defective part. A few examples of the accident risks that bicyclists face include:
- Drunk, distracted, and drowsy drivers;
- Uneven pavement;
- Potholes and other stationary hazards;
- Drivers and bicyclists neglecting the posted traffic laws;
- Collisions with domestic or wild animals;
- Bicycle malfunctions; and
- Low visibility, either of the bicyclist or of another party or object.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA), in 2013, 48,000 bicyclists were injured in accidents. Bicyclists can dramatically reduce their chance of being involved in an accident by making themselves as visible as possible to motorists and others. This is especially true at night, when bicyclists should be making use of reflective clothing and lights on their helmets and bicycles. Bicyclists can also reduce their chance of being injured in an accident by wearing the proper safety gear when riding, such as a helmet and shoes that completely encase the feet and ankles.
If you Are Involved in a Bicycle Accident
If you or anybody else is in need of immediate medical attention, call 911. Otherwise, call the police to have an officer sent to the scene to fill out an official police report. You will need this report later as evidence to support your personal injury claim.
Other evidence to collect from the scene of the accident includes witness testimonies and photographs of the accident and your injury. After leaving the scene, seek medical attention for your injury right away. Only after you have received medical care should you start working with an attorney to file and pursue a personal injury claim.
Work with an Austin Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Bicycling is a great way to enjoy the pleasant weather and get some exercise while saving yourself money for fuel. It can also put you at risk of being involved in dangerous, even deadly, accidents. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, contact our team of Austin personal injury lawyers to discuss your rights and the next steps in filing your personal injury claim.