Bikes are frequently found on the roads in Buffalo, New York. Cycling is considered to be a very healthy physical activity. But if you are injured in a bike accient while cycling you will be needing a bike accident lawyer. Many people ride their bikes to school or if they are going to nearby coffee shops and/or convenience stores.
Some people bike every day as part of their exercise regime. In simple words, cycling is a popular activity, and thus cyclists are often seen sharing the road with cars, buses, trucks, and vans. As more people ride their bikes, the incidence of bicycle accidents also increases.
If you were in a bicycle accident and were seriously injured, you need to talk to a bike accident lawyer at one of the best law firms in Buffalo as soon as you possibly can.
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Causes of Bicycle Accidents
Some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents in Buffalo, New York, include:
- Failure of other vehicle drivers to responsibly share the road with cyclists. This is a key problem on the roads today as drivers do not realize that cyclists also deserve to be on the roads. Drivers choose to ignore cyclists, fail to give them the right of way and drive recklessly even though they can see a cyclist in their lane. This can result in a bicycle accident. If this happened to you, the first thing you need to do is to speak to a bike wreck lawyer immediately.
- The absence of an exclusive bike lane in certain areas of the city is also a major cause of bicycle accidents as cyclists are more prone to get into an accident if they don’t have their own lane. The problem is that a bicycle is not as strong as a car or a bus for example. Not only is it a smaller medium of transportation, but it is also structurally much weaker. Bikes are lightweight and don’t take up much space, but if a bike gets hit by a car, the probability of the cyclist suffering more severe injuries as compared to a car driver is fairly obvious. In order to prevent this from happening, bicycle lanes are created so that the risk is minimized. However, there are some areas where there are no bicycle lanes and cyclists have to share the road with vehicles that are bigger than their bikes. This can cause accidents. If you were hit by another vehicle while riding your bike on the road, you should contact bike accident lawyers immediately.
- Failure to obey traffic rules and regulations is another common cause of bicycle accidents. This is applicable to both drivers and cyclists. Sometimes, drivers choose to ignore signals or resort to speeding or distracted driving which can cause harm to cyclists. Similarly, cyclists can often behave recklessly and break the red light or ride at a dangerous speed. If they do so, they might get hit by another vehicle on the road, and the cyclist can sustain serious injuries.
Types of Injuries after a Bicycle Accident
As mentioned before, a bike is a much smaller mode of transportation as compared to other vehicles on the road. If a bicycle accident occurs, cyclists can suffer severe injuries.
This is especially true if they are not wearing a protective helmet. Some of the most common types of injuries observed after a Buffalo bicycle accident include:
- Head injuries especially if the cyclist is thrown on to the side road or pavement.
- Fractures and broken bones that often occur when a cyclist is run down by another vehicle.
- Spinal injuries and muscle injuries especially when the vehicle is a bus or a truck.
- Lacerations and skin rashes if the cyclist falls down or slides down the road.
In order to minimize the risk of these injuries in case of a bike accident, it is recommended that all cyclists take proper precautions. These include the use of a helmet every time they are on the road.
Most people think that only children need helmets, but that is where they are wrong. Helmets are required no matter how old the cyclist is. Helmets offer great protection against head injuries and can play a critical role in protecting the cyclist from serious head trauma.
In addition, cyclists should understand that no matter what they think or feel, their bike cannot compete with a car or truck. There is no reason to make any efforts to prove otherwise or trying to get ahead of a car or overtaking a bus.
This type of attitude and behavior can only end up hurting the cyclist. If you live in Buffalo, NY and if you were in a bike accident, speak to a bike accident lawyer today.
Types of Bicycle Accidents
If you live in Buffalo, NY and if you were hurt in a bike accident, you must talk to a bike accident attorney. Bike accident lawyers will determine the type of accident, the extent of injuries and the type of compensation you can claim. Some of the main types of bicycle accidents include:
Accidents at Road Turns
Turns, corners, and intersections are quite common sites of accidents. This type of accident is generally the driver’s fault as many drivers fail to give cyclists the right of way. They turn without paying attention to oncoming traffic and without observing or being on the lookout for a bike. Sometimes, drivers can take very fast turns and don’t have the time to stop in case they see a bike. At other times, drivers don’t bother to give a signal and can directly collide with a cyclist. If you were hit by a driver at an intersection or at a turning, you need to speak to a bike wreck lawyer immediately.
These often occur when drivers and passengers of other vehicles fail to observe that a bike may be passing them by or approaching them from behind. They open the door and hit the cyclist. The cyclist can get seriously injured if they are thrown off the road. This is a common problem on busy streets and congested roadways. Talk to a bike accident attorney if you were a victim of such negligent driver behavior.
Cyclists are often responsible for their own bicycle accidents. Some cyclists have a tendency to ride too fast. They also sometimes take on unnecessary risks by driving too close to other vehicles. If there is no separate bicycle lane, it is important for cyclists to exercise caution. Even if the cyclists have to slow down and let another vehicle pass by, they should do it as it is for their own safety. Cyclists can sometimes break signals or go over the specified speed limit. This form of reckless cycling can cause bicycle accidents.
Drivers are similarly responsible for causing many road accidents including those involving bicycles. Drivers can be distracted while driving, drunk or intoxicated or speeding. When drivers behave recklessly, cyclists can be the first ones to suffer because bikes are light and don’t offer much protection. If a driver who is not driving properly hits a bike head-on, the cyclist is bound to suffer some serious injuries. If you were in a head-on collision with a motor vehicle, you need to speak to a bike wreck lawyer at your earliest convenience.
Determining Fault and Dealing with Insurance Companies
In Buffalo, New York, the fault system is used for road accidents. This means that whenever a compensation claim is filed, the legal system is required to establish who the responsible parties were and on the basis of this information, they allocate liability.
If there is a bicycle accident, and if the driver of another motor vehicle is found to be at fault, the insurance company of that driver will pay the cyclist compensation for any damages they might have incurred. If the cyclist is found to be partly responsible, the compensation amount is reduced by the level of their fault.
In other words, whoever caused the accident is the one who is deemed responsible and held liable for any damages. Discuss with your bike accident lawyer how fault is determined in Buffalo, New York, and how you can file a claim.
The fault determination system, in theory, seems simple enough but in reality, establishing fault and acting on it may not be as easy. Every insurance company will try to protect their client because, in essence, they are protecting themselves.
If a driver hits you and you believe that they were at fault, the driver’s insurance agent will not give you a cheque for the amount you demand. As your bike accident lawyers will tell you, nothing is as simple as that.
Your bike accident attorney will have to demonstrate, with solid evidence, that the accident was the driver’s fault. This can be done through medical reports, police report, witness testimonies, the extent of injuries, damage to the bike and other similar evidence.
Once this is done, the insurance company may continue to argue. They may offer the cyclist a minor amount as settlement so that the matter would be closed and they wouldn’t have to incur big losses.
Don’t make the mistake of accepting such an offer. Call your bike accident lawyer immediately and tell them what the insurance company has to say.
Talk to a Bike Accident Lawyer
For all practical purposes, it is best that you don’t engage with the insurance companies at all. Let your bike accident attorney do it on your behalf. As it is, if you have suffered injuries, your priority right now is to get back on your feet.
You don’t want to further stress yourself with this back-and-forth bickering with insurance agents. That’s what your bike accident lawyers can do for you. Let them deal with this while you focus on getting better.
There is no doubt that a bike wreck lawyer will have more experience in dealing with insurance companies and accident cases. Therefore, if you were in a bike accident, don’t think but just call a bike accident lawyer.
There is a general perception that cyclists don’t belong on the road. Many drivers have this attitude, even in areas where there are bike lanes.
A good bike accident attorney will never let a driver get away with treating you unfairly, being careless and negligent and causing your injuries.
You need to fight for your rights.
Retain an Experienced Bike Accident Lawyer
Contact your bike accident lawyer at Buffalo Car Accident Attorneys and seek their help to fight for what is rightfully yours. If somebody hit you and it was not your fault, you need to be compensated.