The Sunshine State welcomes outdoor enthusiasts year-round. You can see numerous bicyclists on almost every road at any point during the year. Because of the optimal conditions, many people ride bicycles in the Doral area to stay fit, save money, avoid traffic and parking, and to simply enjoy the sun. Sadly, this also causes Florida to continually lead the nation in the most bicyclist deaths in the United States.
Crashes place bicyclists at extremely high risk of injury or death. Even if bicyclists ride as safely as possible, they still cannot control the actions of drivers, who often do not properly share the road. Because bicycle accidents so commonly take place in Florida, anyone who rides a bicycle must understand their legal rights in the event of an accident.
The experienced lawyers at Sibley Dolman have seen how a bicycle accident can completely derail your life. After an injury, we can advise you of your legal options and help you through the entire legal process when necessary. We’re here to assist bicycle accident victims, so please call to schedule your free case evaluation today.
How Bicycle Accidents Take Place
Florida law allows bicyclists to use the roadways just like other types of vehicles. However, bicyclists do have responsibilities, such as using bicycle lanes when available, signaling appropriately, and more. Drivers of motor vehicles also have responsibilities when it comes to sharing the road with bicyclists and ensure their safety. Violation of these duties is generally the leading cause of bicycle accidents.
Drivers can violate the law and cause bike crashes through:
- Failing to yield
- Improperly passing a bicyclist
- Turning in front of a bicycle
- Not looking before opening a car door while parked on a street
- Distracted driving
- Not obeying traffic signals or stop signs
- Other forms of careless or reckless driving
Right-hook accidents and dooring accidents are unique to bicycle riders. In right-hook accidents, driver who want to turn right will speed up, improperly pass bicyclists in bike lanes, then turn in front of them. Drivers often misjudge the speed of bicyclists, and bicyclists may lack the space and time to stop when a vehicle suddenly turns right in front of them. This causes bicyclists to crash directly into the car, often throwing them from their bikes, over the vehicles, and onto the ground.
A dooring accident takes place when a car parks along the side of the road to the right of a bicycle lane. Drivers or backseat passengers should always check to see if cars or bicyclists are coming before they open doors on the street side—but they often fail to adequately check for bicyclists. A bicyclist can crash into a suddenly opened door, causing serious injuries.
In addition to right hooks and dooring accidents, rear-end accidents, head-on collisions, and other types of common vehicle crashes can strike bicyclists. Bicyclists may also crash because they suddenly encounter road hazards—potholes present serious dangers for cyclists—or because bike parts suddenly malfunction. These accidents can come out of nowhere and can completely disrupt your life—sometimes permanently. Bicycle accident victims can incur extensive losses, and you should always know your rights to financial recovery.
Recovering for Your Losses
Bicyclists have little protection from accidents. Many drivers think that bicycle helmets will protect riders, but Florida only requires bicyclists younger than 16 to wear helmets. A helmet, moreover, only protects the head, leaving the rest of the body completely exposed. In addition, a bicycle helmet only protects someone from head trauma some of the time—no helmet can prevent 100 percent of head injuries.
Bicycle victims can sustain severe:
- Broken bones
- Shattered or crushed limbs
- Spinal cord injuries
- Facial fractures and injuries
- Skull fractures
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Soft tissue tears
- Friction burns (road rash)
- Serious contusions
In most cases, a bicyclist will require immediate medical attention. Ongoing treatments may last for weeks or months after the crash, during which injuries may prevent a bicyclist from working or engaging in everyday activities. Some bicyclists suffer permanent injuries—and their lives will never return to normal.
If another driver, a road hazard, or a defective bike caused your accident and injuries, the skilled personal injury attorneys at Sibley Dolman can fight for compensation for all of your losses. Extensive medical expenses alone can include:
- Ambulance transportation
- Emergency room visit
- Diagnostic tests
- Medical equipment
- Physical therapy
- Home health care
In addition to overwhelming medical expenses, a bicycle accident victim can also incur:
- Lost income, if a victim cannot work due to injuries
- Lost earning opportunities (especially if someone can never return to a previous job)
- Lost enjoyment of life
- Physical and mental pain and suffering
- Permanent impairments and disabilities
- Permanent disfigurement
In some cases, the parties can resolve a bicycle accident claim through the insurance process. Covering extensive losses and obtaining the financial recovery you deserve, however, may require filing a personal injury claim in civil court. You need the right bicycle accident law firm on your side who understands every step of the legal process and how to best protect your rights to compensation.
Consult With a Doral Personal Injury Lawyer for Free Today
The Sibley Dolman handles a wide range of accident and injury cases, including complicated bicycle accident claims. Injured in a bicycle accident in south Florida? Do not delay in calling to discuss your rights and options. You have a limited time to take legal action after a bicycle accident injury, so please contact our office at (727) 451-6900 or write to us online for a free consultation today.
8400 NW 36th St Suite 450
Doral, FL 33166
What Our Clients Have to Say:
“My experience with this law firm has been extremely pleasant. After being involved in an accident where I was injured, I was able to seek treatment from the best doctors in the area. I was lucky to have a team that assisted in scheduling my appointments that worked around both my full time work schedule and my demanding grad school schedule. Even with a move out of state to New York, I was able to remain with this law firm and continue treatment in south Florida while remaining under the care of the doctors that I felt most comfortable with. Even though I suffered injuries and experienced difficulties in that aspect, the team here was able to make sure that I was able to continue work and stay on track with grad school all while I moved to a new state.”
Rating: 5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
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