Here in Washington, we have embraced the bicycle as a good way to get outside, get some fresh air, and a great way to get exercise. Many Washingtonians find that their bicycle is the best form of transportation to get around town and to and from work each day. In fact, we have been known as the nation’s number one “Bicycle Friendly State” for eight years in a row.
Unfortunately, bicycle accidents are also a fact of life here in Washington with the Washington Traffic Safety Commission reporting that bicyclists and pedestrians accounted for 18.6 percent of traffic fatalities and 22.5 percent of serious injuries between the years of 2013 and 2017.What Makes a Bicyclist More Vulnerable in an Accident?
Any time a bicyclist shares the road with motor vehicles, the bicyclist is particularly vulnerable. A bicycle is not only smaller in size but far less visible and can be missed by drivers who don’t take care and precautions to check their surroundings or their blind spots. Pair that with the lack of protection on a bicycle and you have an added exposure to injuries and devastating fatalities.
Because of that lack of protection, a bicyclist is particularly vulnerable to serious injuries when involved in an accident with a car. These can include
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Road rash, cuts, abrasions
- Crush injuries
- Organ damage
- Soft tissue damage
- Emotional trauma and PTSD
- Wrongful death
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, you should get the advice of an experienced bicycle accident attorney in Bellevue. At Northwest Law Group, we have dedicated our careers to the rights of injured parties and recovering fair compensation for them after an injury.Bicycle Accidents and Driver Negligence
Driver negligence is the number one cause of bicycle accidents on our roads today. A careless driver is a bicyclist’s worst nightmare. In the case of a bicycle accident, driver negligence can look like
- Distracted driving
- Aggressive driving
- Drug or alcohol-impared driving
- Failing to yield
- Running a red light
- Failing to allow enough room for the bicyclist
- Unsafe lane changes
- Turning without looking
Although a great number of our roads support bicycle lanes, it is often not enough when you are confronted with a careless or negligent driver.
When a bicycle accident is caused by a driver’s negligence, that driver can be held responsible for injuries that were caused by their reckless or careless act. Even if the bicyclist was partially at fault for the accident, under pure comparative fault laws, that bicyclist may still collect compensation to the degree that the driver was at fault for the accident.
Although negligence can often be difficult to prove, an experienced bicycle accident lawyer in Bellevue will understand what evidence will be required to hold a negligent driver accountable for their actions.What Compensation You May Be Entitled to After a Bicycle Accident
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries and damages, including
- Your medical costs, hospital bills, doctor visits, physical and occupational therapies, and other costs associated with your injuries
- Any future medical costs that may arise as they apply to your injuries
- Lost wages if you have been unable to work
- Future lost earning capacity if you are unable to return to your former career
- Property damages
- Noneconomic damages such as pain and suffering or emotional distress
Although the at-fault driver’s insurance company may come forward with a settlement, it’s important to speak with an experienced Bellevue bicycle accident attorney before you accept any settlement. Initial settlements are frequently inadequate to completely compensate you for your costs and damages and are often far less than you would get with the representation of a lawyer.Get the Advice of a Legal Expert
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, you should get the advice of an experienced Bellevue bicycle accident lawyer to understand your rights under the law. At Northwest Law Group, we offer a no-cost initial consultation to discuss your case and your legal options. You never pay any legal fees until we recover compensation on your behalf. Contact us today if you have suffered an injury in a bicycle accident.
Our team of bicycle accident attorneys serve Bellevue and other communities throughout Washington State, including:
- Federal Way
- Maple Valley
- University Place
- Lake Stevens
- Mill Creek
- Mountlake Terrace
- Port Orchard
- Bainbridge Island
- Port Gamble