Missouri Bicycle Accident Attorneys
In 2015, 818 people died in bicycle/motor vehicle crashes. It was a 12.2 percent increase from the year before. Hospital records show that only a fraction of bicycle crashes causing injury are ever recorded by the police.
Obviously, there can be risks associated with riding a bicycle. Nighttime riding tends be riskier than rides during the day. The risk may also be based on the experience level of the rider, the location of riding, alcohol use and many other factors. Bicycle accidents are governed by state law, but all states mandate that cyclists and drivers obey the rules of the road.
Who is getting killed in bicycle crashes? In 2014, the average age of bicyclists killed in crashes with motor vehicles was 45 years old. Of those that were killed, 88 percent were male. 20 percent of these bicycle fatalities occurred between 6:00 p.m. and 8:59 p.m., and 71 percent of them were in urban areas. Of those killed, 19 percent had blood alcohol concentrations of 0.08 g/dL or higher. In 35 percent of the crashes, either the third-party driver or the bicyclist had blood alcohol concentrations of 0.08 g/dL or higher. Leading the nation in bicycle fatalities was California (128), Florida (139) and Texas (50). In 2014, there were two states with no bicycle fatalities – Rhode Island and Vermont. All of these statistics were provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Are you a cyclist that has been hit by an automobile? Rotts Law Firm is here to help. The outcome of a bicycle accident often depends on two questions. Did negligence or recklessness on the part of a third party driver cause the accident or did negligence of the bicyclist cause or contribute to the accident?
Let's talk a little bit about negligence. Negligence by a third-party driver can be many different things. The third-party driver may have been speeding, running a stop sign, driving into a bike lane, texting or engaging in distracted driving. A plaintiff typically must prove that the defendant acted in a way that violated a duty owed to the plaintiff. Often, this is a duty to follow the rules of the road or operate a motor vehicle in a safe and prudent manner. Every case is unique. Therefore, it all comes down to the facts of the case and whether the plaintiff is able prove that the third party was negligent (which usually occurs through an accident reconstructionist, eyewitness testimony or other evidence). In sum, negligence can be a complex situation and require in-depth analysis.
What to do? In the event that you are involved in a bicycle accident, it is important to remember to retain the damaged bicycle. Do not initiate repair or allow the insurance company to take the bicycle into their custody, even if it is completely destroyed. This is because it may be necessary to have an expert review your bike to determine how the crash occurred. Our attorneys often hire a professional engineer to create bicycle crash analysis that may help reconstruct the accident, thereby helping to prove fault or the lack thereof.
Rotts Law Firm in Columbia, MO, handles a variety of bicycle accident claims. We can help you if you sustained injuries due to road defects such as potholes, ill-timed lights, unsafe man-hole covers and dangerous road gratings. We can also help you if your injuries and damages were caused by bicycle equipment defects, including broken forks, quick-releases, stems, etc. We are also here to help if your bicycle wreck was due to an automobile or motorcycle. Additionally, we represent victims of wrongful death and cyclist insurance claims. Please consult with our law firm if you or a loved one was involved in a bike accident.