At Midwest Injury Lawyers, we have the knowledge and experience to fight for you, having recovered over $50 million in compensation for injured clients over the last several years. Our mission is to be a voice for those that need to tell their story, maximizing their recovery so they can live the best life possible after suffering a severe injury.
When you need a strong advocate on your side, look no further than the Hammond bicycle accident attorneys at Midwest Injury Lawyers. We only work on contingency fees, which means you owe us nothing unless and until we recover compensation on your behalf.
No matter where you live, biking is an activity that benefits your health and well-being and the environment. Hammond encourages biking, with miles of bike lanes, greenways, trails, and more. Many people bike for recreation, sport, or even as their daily transportation.
For example, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that 1,260 bicyclists lost their lives in motor-vehicle traffic crashes in one recent year alone. Bicyclist fatalities represented two percent of all motor vehicle traffic deaths during the same year.
Many factors can contribute to these bicycle accidents. For example, bicycles are smaller than motorized vehicles, and drivers don’t always look out for them like other cars. Both of these factors make them hard to see. Regarding bicycle accidents due to the negligence of another person or party, the most common causes are as follows.
Distracted driving is one of the most common causes of all types of motor vehicle collisions, including those with bicycles. If drivers pay attention to something else, like their phones, instead of their driving, they are much more likely to cause a crash.
Common distractions include:
Talking on the phone.
Using social media.
Paying attention to passengers or pets inside the vehicle.
Eating and drinking.
Whether impaired by drugs or alcohol, these drivers have decreased judgment, slowed reaction times, and decreased visual perception. As a result, they are much less likely to see bicyclists and react with enough time and sense to avoid a collision.
Drivers who are out early or late or trying to go home after working their shift can have a markedly increased risk of causing severe collisions. In fact, recent studies show that drowsy driving is just as risky as drunk driving.
Drivers who follow behind bicyclists too closely and pass them within three feet or less unnecessarily create hazardous conditions. Not only are these drivers more likely to collide with cyclists, but they are also leaving both themselves and bicyclists with very few options to prevent an accident.
In roundabouts, intersections with merging lanes, and many other traffic areas, some locations require drivers to yield to oncoming traffic—including bicycles. If they ignore or blatantly disregard their obligation to yield, the chances of an accident increase significantly.
Running stop signs and red lights is a frequent cause of intersection accidents in neighborhoods, suburban areas, and urban locations. While running a stop sign or signal alone is hazardous, the risks are much higher when drivers don’t look for bicyclists with the legal right of way.
Many times, drivers are given the green light to turn at an intersection but still must watch for bicyclists and pedestrians. Turning without watching is a frequent yet entirely avoidable cause of bicycle accidents at intersections.
Weaving through traffic makes drivers less likely to see bicyclists who are on the road. Drivers are also less likely to maneuver quickly and efficiently to avoid an accident. Unfortunately, weaving drivers frequently drift from their traffic lanes onto bike lanes and shoulders, putting bicyclists in grave danger.
Drivers don’t have to be weaving to be dangerous. Even one unsafe lane change can still cause a severe crash. Bicycle accidents involving unsafe lane changes usually occur when drivers merge into cyclists’ lanes without first ensuring that their desired lane is clear.
If you were recently involved in a bicycle accident, you might wonder if you have a valid injury claim. Most injury claims are rooted in negligence. Negligence is the failure to behave in a way that a reasonably prudent person should act under the same circumstances.
The person who hit you, or in some cases another party, had a duty to act in a way to keep you safe. For instance, they shouldn’t be weaving between traffic lanes.
The person who hit you violated that duty in some way.
The breach of duty was the cause of your injuries.
As a result of your injuries, you incurred compensable damages. These damages might include medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, scarring and disfigurement, and many others.
Even with helmets and other protective gear, cyclists are still highly vulnerable on the road. They are no match for the larger, heavier vehicles they share the road with. Whereas motorists and their passengers have the protection of airbags, vehicle frames, seat belts, roll bars, and other safety features, bicyclists are left to hope for the best.
As such, they can sustain:
If a cyclist’s skin is exposed, they will most likely suffer injuries of this nature. Some can be severe and may require stitches or plastic surgery. In addition, there’s a risk of infection and permanent scarring.
Some bones won’t hold up to the brutal forces placed on them by bicycle accidents. It’s common for cyclists to break their wrists, arms, legs, ankles, ribs, skulls, and pelvis. Many will be relatively minor and heal on their own, but others will require surgery and physical therapy to recover.
Victims of bicycle accidents can injure any part of their spinal cord, leaving them with temporary or permanent paralysis of their legs or arms and legs. They may face astronomical medical expenses for the rest of their lives.
Cyclists can still sustain TBIs even with a high-quality helmet. Some will heal on their own with them. Others may be fatal or life-altering, requiring years of therapy and medical care.
When you work with Hammond bicycle accident attorneys, they will ensure you get the most compensation possible to pay you fairly for your injuries.
The actions you do or don’t take after being involved in a bicycle accident can significantly impact the value and success of your bicycle accident claim. Here are some of the most imperative steps to take.
Any injuries should be medically documented as soon as possible. Even if you don’t have any apparent symptoms or signs of injury, it’s in the best interest of your health and your legal claim to have a medical exam after a bike accident. Additionally, if the doctor prescribes a treatment plan or physical restrictions, be sure to follow them.Don’t Repair or Throw out Evidence
In the meantime, the bicyclist should be sure that they don’t repair or discard their bicycle. The same applies to their helmet and any other safety gear they wore during the accident. So while it might be tempting to move on and ensure they have a workable bicycle again, the damaged bike is often valuable evidence in a
bicycle accident case. It can show how and where the driver hit the cyclist, the severity of the impact, and more.
You can also get compensation for the damage your bike sustained. Many bicycles cost thousands of dollars, and you deserve coverage of your property damage, as well.
Record any aftereffects from the accident. Victims can experience other symptoms or side effects long after the initial bicycle accident is over. All of these effects are worth mentioning to your Hammond bicycle accident attorney. They can present the many ways your injury affects your life to support your claim and maximize your damages.
Some victims find it helpful to keep a journal specifically related to their accident.
Here they record symptoms or circumstances, such as:
According to the National Transportation Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA), bicyclist fatalities generally occur more frequently in urban areas (78 percent) than in rural areas (22 percent).
More specifically, these accidents commonly occur at:
Under the Indiana statute of limitations, injured bicyclists have two years from their accident to seek compensation through a lawsuit. Some exceptions may make the deadline longer or shorter. Regardless, it is strict, so contact our reputable Hammond bicycle accident attorneys as soon as possible. Failure to do so can result in not receiving compensation for your injuries.
You don’t need to rely on your own judgment to determine how or why your bicycle accident occurred, who caused it, or if you have a valid claim. Schedule a complimentary case review today with one of our skilled Hammond bicycle accident lawyers, and we can determine if you have a claim. If so, we will thoroughly investigate your case, identify all sources of potential compensation, and hold the proper parties accountable for their actions. In addition, we have the resources, skills, and experience to obtain the best outcome in your case. Reach out to a personal injury lawyer.
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2901 Carlson Drive Suite 364,
Hammond, IN 46323
Phone: (219) 200-0151
Tell our experienced team about your accident and/or injuries. One of our personal injury attorneys will contact you to schedule a free case evaluation. Remember: you won’t pay for anything unless we secure a compensation on your behalf.
Call (312) 786-5881 or send us a message online to get started.