Fight For Compensation with an Experienced Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Many Southern California residents are avid cyclists, enjoying bike trips for recreation and even commuting to work. Unfortunately, bicycle travel is not without risk, and serious accidents involving motor vehicles, are common. A bicycle accident lawyer can make a tremendous difference in the lives of San Diego, CA, victims and their families. Our law firm has helped many clients recover appropriate compensation for injuries and losses caused by negligent parties.
If you have suffered a bike accident caused by another party, we encourage you to contact our personal injury attorneys today. Kerry Steigerwalt offers a free consultation and work on a contingency basis, so you will not be charged an up-front legal retainer fee for our services.
California Bicycle Accidents
California has the unfortunate distinction of leading the nation in cyclist deaths, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA). In 2012 alone, California saw 123 fatal bicycle accidents. Nationwide, GHSA reported a 16 percent increase in cyclist deaths between 2010 and 2012, with a marked increase in fatalities among adults (84 percent of total 2012 deaths).
To avoid serious or fatal injury on a bike, it is recommended that adults and children always wear a helmet and clothing that is designed to increase their visibility on the road.
To avoid serious or fatal injury on a bike, it is recommended that adults and children always wear a helmet and clothing that is designed to increase their visibility on the road. It is important to travel in the same direction of traffic, ride with a companion, and always keep an ID tag in your pocket.
Legal Rights for Cyclists
When a collision involves a bike and motor vehicle, insurance adjusters will often try to assign responsibility for the accident to the cyclist. California is a contributory negligence state, so accident victims who share blame may be offered minimal compensation. It is wise to speak to an attorney as soon as possible after a bike accident.
California bicycle riders have protective legal rights, but they can be difficult to understand. First, when travelling as fast as traffic, cyclists have the right to ride on the road. When moving slower than traffic, cyclists are expected to keep as close to the right as possible, but may enter traffic for a number of reasons.
Many motorists and even police do not understand this law, which allows a bike rider to “take the lane” in the following circumstances:
- While passing
- Preparing for a left turn
- In avoidance of a hazard
- When the lane is too narrow
- When approaching an area to make an authorized right turn
Bicycle laws state that bike paths must remain free of obstacles, so anyone stopping or parking in a designated bike path is creating an illegal hazard.
Importance of Legal Help
Accident victims suffering a catastrophic injury may be faced with ongoing medical expenses, temporary or permanent disability, loss of income, and pain and suffering. Family members who have lost a loved one to an accident will incur immediate expenses and be forced to deal with ongoing emotional and financial losses.
If an injury or wrongful death accident was caused by negligent driving, carelessness, poorly maintained property, or product failure, you may be entitled to generous compensation. Obtaining help from an experienced lawyer is the best way to recover what you deserve.
Our attorneys are well versed in California bicycle and motor vehicle accident law, and have accrued years of experience fighting for victims’ rights. We understand insurance tactics and will work proactively to help you secure maximum compensation.
Please contact our personal injury law firm today to schedule a free consultation and case review with one of our attorneys.