Thousands of people ride bicycles every day for both recreation and as a way to get from place to place, and Florida’s famously warm climate allows people to ride bicycles through much of the state almost year-round. No reasonable person would take issue with the fact that riding a bicycle is a healthy, cost-efficient, and environmentally friendly way to get from place to place. While these facts are true, it is also true that cyclists put themselves at risk of serious injury every time they take to the road. This is particularly true in areas where cars and bikes are in close proximity, which is often the case in places like St. Petersburg.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that an estimated 48,000 pedalcyclists were injured during 2013. When cyclists are injured by the negligence of drivers, they are often entitled to significant financial compensation. For this reason, anyone injured in a bicycle accident that they believe was caused by the negligence of a driver should discuss their options with an experienced St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible.
Proving negligence can require the collection of evidence
Liability is not a contested issue in the vast majority of Florida bicycle accident cases, leaving the amount of compensation to be paid the major issue to be resolved. In some cases, however, liability is contested, meaning that the party alleging negligence is required to obtain evidence in support of his or her position. Collecting and analyzing evidence of negligence can require significant legal expertise, so it is important for victims to retain an attorney familiar with litigating bicycle accident cases. Some of the kinds of evidence that may be gathered are detailed below.
Physical evidence – Physical evidence may include the vehicles involved in the accident or the safety equipment a bicyclist was wearing at the time of an accident. This type of evidence can be used to prove the nature and extent of any injuries that were sustained.
Witness statements – Witness statements can be used to establish how an accident occurred. In some cases, they may exist as part of any official record that was generated by law enforcement officers that responded to the scene of an accident, while in others, witness statements may be obtained through the use of discovery tools such as depositions or interrogatories.
Photographic or video evidence – In some cases, photographic evidence of the aftermath of an accident or surveillance video footage that happened to capture an accident occurring may be used to establish negligence.
Expert witness analysis or opinion – Some particularly complicated bicycle accident cases require consulting with a consultant who is an expert in accident reconstruction. These kinds of witnesses can either provide their opinion through a formal deposition or may be called as a witness at trial. These types of experts often charge hundreds of dollar per hour, making them financially out of reach for many accident victims. Fortunately, when you retain legal counsel, the firm will pay for these kinds of up-front costs as well as any others associated with litigation.
The types of evidence that may need to be required in your bicycle accident case will depend on the specific circumstances of your accident. The most effective way to ensure that you build the strongest legal case possible is to retain an experienced St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible after an accident occurs.
Contact a St. Petersburg bicycle accident attorney today to schedule a free case evaluation
When people are injured in bicycle accidents, they are often entitled to significant compensation. The kinds of losses for which bicycle accident victims can often recover include medical expenses, lost income, loss of enjoyment of life, and physical and emotional pain and suffering, as well as others. The lawyers of the Dolman Law Group are dedicated personal injury advocates who understand how to obtain the highest available settlement or award on behalf of their clients. To schedule a free consultation with one of our St. Petersburg personal injury lawyers, call our office today at (727) 222-6922.
Dolman Law Group
1663 1st Ave S.
St. Petersburg, FL 33712