More and more Americans are choosing to ride a bicycle for transportation, exercise, and enjoyment. However, more cyclists on the road may mean more traffic accidents involving vehicles and bicycles.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), traffic deaths involving bicyclists and pedestrians have been increasing yearly since 2009. The most recent NHTSA data states that more than 850 bicyclists were killed in traffic accidents in 2018.
Bicycles have the same rights as cars, motorcycles, and other vehicles when traveling on roadways. Vehicle drivers have a responsibility to share the road with cyclists and to watch out for the safety of bicyclists and pedestrians. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, a Kansas City bicycle accident lawyer may be able to help you seek compensation from the party liable for your accident. To learn more, contact the offices of Ben Crump Law, PLLC at (800)-761-5225.
Causes of Bicycle Accidents
According to the NHTSA, three primary factors contribute to bicycle traffic accidents:
- Driver behavior – Speeding, failing to yield, drinking and driving, making an improper turn, and distracted driving can all lead to bicycle accidents.
- Bicyclist behavior – Cyclists must also follow traffic laws and should not be bicycling while under the influence of alcohol and drugs. Bicyclists also should take measures to increase their visibility, such as wearing reflective clothing, especially at night.
- Infrastructure – Accidents involving cars and bicycles are more likely to happen on roadways where there is no separation between motor vehicles and non-motorized vehicles. Additionally, about one-third of fatal accidents of this type happen at intersections.
If you were struck by a motorist because they were engaged in reckless and unsafe driving behaviors, they may be liable for your accident and injuries. The entity in charge of the roadway may also bear some responsibility for your crash if you were hurt because of a poorly designed intersection, faulty traffic signal, or other negligent road conditions. Reach out to a Kansas City bicycle accident lawyer for help with investigating your crash and seeking compensation from those responsible.
Other Liability Examples
Not all bicycle accidents involve a motor vehicle. If you were involved in another type of bicycle accident, and you believe it was caused by someone else’s negligence, you still may be owed compensation. Examples of non-motorized vehicle bicycle accidents include:
- A collision caused by another bicyclist or pedestrian
- A collision caused by a dangerous dog
- An accident caused by loose gravel, a dangerous shoulder, or an object in the roadway
- An accident caused by poor lighting of a road or other public area
For a free legal consultation with a bicycle accidents lawyer serving Kansas City, call 800-761-5225
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
A bicycle accident should be handled in the same manner as a car crash. This means you should call 911 or local law enforcement to report the accident, and you should exchange information with the driver of the motor vehicle. Many automobile insurance policies will cover injuries caused to a bicyclist, so make sure you get the driver’s insurance information.
If your injuries are severe, you probably received emergency medical treatment at the time of your accident. If you have not been treated, see a doctor as soon as you experience signs or symptoms of any injuries that could have been caused by your crash. Keep a record of all of your medical costs, from doctor visits to prescription pain medications.
According to Consumer Reports, you should not make any repairs to your bicycle until your case is settled. Also, do not admit fault for your accident to the other driver or their insurance agent. Instead, record every detail that you can about your accident, and consider contacting an attorney.
Laws You Should Know
It is important to be aware of Missouri’s statutes of limitations. If your case cannot be resolved through an insurance claim, you may need to seek damages in civil court. Missouri Revised Statutes (RSMo) §516.120 gives plaintiffs five years to take legal action for claims of personal injury and/or property damage. RSMo §537.100 assigns a three-year statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death lawsuit.
Though not codified in the state statutes, Missouri does have a legal precedent for a pure comparative negligence fault threshold. What this means is that you will not be barred from seeking compensation, even if you are 99 percent responsible for your accident. You may seek damages from any other party that contributed to your injuries, but the damages they owe will be reduced proportionally to your amount of fault.
If you were badly injured, you can seek compensation for your medical bills as well as injuries that have caused you pain and suffering. You may be entitled to payments for:
- Damaged property
- Lost wages
- Past and future medical care, including physical therapy
Kansas City Bicycle Accident Lawyer Near Me 800-761-5225
Ben Crump Law, PLLC Can Help
Whether negotiating with insurance companies or taking your case to court, you may need someone on your side. Insurance claims and legal battles can be draining, taking that time and energy that you need to recover. A Kansas City bicycle accident lawyer can fight for you so that you can focus on healing.
To win your case, you will need to prove that your accident was due to another party’s negligence. An attorney can help you do this by collecting evidence. Your lawyer can obtain your medical records and accident report, and they can visit the scene of your crash. Your attorney can take statements from witnesses and supply expert testimony about your accident and injuries. Most importantly, your lawyer will be a voice for you, arguing for your best interests against those who might deny your claims.
Reach out to the offices of Ben Crump Law, PLLC to learn more about how we can help. To further assist our clients in their pursuit of justice, we take cases on contingency, meaning you pay nothing unless we win your case. Call (800)-761-5225 to get started with a risk-free consultation.