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Riding a bicycle is an affordable, environmentally friendly, and healthy mode of transportation. Many people ride bicycles for fun, to stay in shape, to save money or as part of their job. However, bicycle accidents can result in devastating injuries.
Regardless of why you ride, cycling comes with a special level of risk. According to the most recent NY State DOT data, there were over 6,000 bicycle crashes with an automobile across the state of New York in 2011.
Bicycle accidents can also be a single-rider event or involve a pedestrian.
Bicycle accidents happen for many reasons. These reasons include distracted driving, glare or obstruction, sleepiness, or intoxication. Bicycle accidents can cause severe injuries or even death.
When someone else is at fault for your injuries, you can seek compensation for the resulting damages. However, you must act quickly. New York has a “statute of limitations” which lays out the maximum amount of time a victim has to bring a lawsuit in court. For bicycle accidents, you generally have three years from the date of the accident to initiate a lawsuit. The time period to file a lawsuit may be even shorter depending on your particular claim. It is important that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible.
When death from a bicycle accident happens and the cause is someone else’s negligence or willful wrongdoing, the cyclist’s family has the right to sue for damages in their loved one’s stead.
At Lipsitz, Ponterio, & Comerford, LLC, our attorneys have extensive experience in personal injury litigation. If you’ve been in a bicycle accident in Rochester, Syracuse, or Buffalo, NY, don’t face the consequences on your own.
Our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys can help you get the settlement you deserve.
Bicycle Accident Causes
There are a number of reasons why bicycle accidents happen. Here are some of the most common reasons for bicycle-based injuries:
The most frequently cited cause of bicycle accidents is rider error. The cyclist or pedestrian may have been confused or made a mistake that resulted in the accident. They may have been distracted, turning improperly, or passed someone too closely.
These types of accidents usually involve a sole rider or a rider and pedestrian. In these cases, injuries are usually minor.
Accidents Involving Cars
The causes of bicycle accidents with motor vehicles can include:
When bicycle accidents happen because a person driving a car was driving too fast or acting out of anger, their behavior might qualify as reckless or malicious. This can be grounds for a lawsuit for negligence.
When acts such as these ones above result in death, the victim’s family can sue for wrongful death benefits in addition to other personal injury damages.
Another common cause of bicycle accidents is products that are defective. If a manufacturing error with a tire or frame causes the bicycle to be unsafe for the rider and a company neglects to recall products that are known to be dangerous, they can be held liable for any resulting injuries.
Defective bicycles and parts are not the only examples of this risk. Product defects cause accidents in a wide variety of ways.
A construction crew may break a jackhammer while using it because there was a problem with the product’s manufacturing quality. This broken part can then present an obstacle in the road that a cyclist cannot avoid at the last minute.
The bicycle rider may sue both companies and the construction company may also decide to sue the jackhammer company.
Product defect cases can be complex. It’s important to partner with a skilled legal professional with experience in product liability, like the team at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC.
Sometimes, bicycle accidents happen for reasons unrelated to vehicles or pedestrians. Maybe a construction zone didn’t have proper signs displayed or an object fell into the bike lane.
Regardless of the reason a bicycle accident occurs, victims often face financial and medical consequences. A cyclist should not have to pay for the damages when they are not at fault.
If you’ve been involved in a bicycle accident caused by another person, call the premier injury attorneys, Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC. With offices in Rochester and Buffalo, NY, we will fight for your rights and help you seek the compensation you deserve.
What Kinds of Compensation Can I Seek in a Bicycle Accident Case?
There are two primary forms of compensation that parties injured in bicycle accidents in New York can pursue. These are known as “economic” damages and “non-economic” damages.
Economic damages are quantifiable expenses, such as medical bills. Money is most often paid to cover medical bills and related expenses, but financial compensation can also account for things like lost wages due to time taken off from work.
Severe bicycle accidents, such as those involving an automobile crash, can cause severe injuries.
A bicycle rider may experience brain and head injuries, broken bones, or worse. Hospital bills can add up quickly.
When you partner with the experienced team at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC, we will help you secure the maximum recovery you deserve. These damages may include:
When you’re the victim of a bicycle accident, there is no reason that you should have to pay for your damages out of your own pocket. Not only are the immediate costs extensive, but there could be ongoing care costs for the rest of your life. Let our skilled legal professionals fight for you.
Damages that are not directly related to a financial expense are referred to as non-economic damages. These types of damages are common in bicycle accidents and can be included in personal injury awards.
This type of compensation can also include pain and suffering. It can account for intangible losses, often mental and emotional, including:
It can be difficult to quantify your non-economic damages. After all, what is a reasonable value to put on being able to take walks with your spouse without pain or the ability to lift your child?
Pain and suffering damages are strongly correlated with the degree to which the accident has affected your current and future life.
An amateur model may have to choose a different career path if she is disfigured in a bicycle accident. A child may be disabled for life if he loses a limb. Someone with extreme mental anxiety because of an accident may cease to socialize with friends and family, thus reducing their overall quality of life.
When you partner with the legal team at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC, we’ll help you to calculate your non-economic damages so that you have the compensation you deserve.
What to Do If You’re in a Bicycle Accident in Rochester, Syracuse, or Buffalo, NY
If you are injured while riding a bicycle, there are several important steps you must take immediately.
First, call 911 and ask for an ambulance if anyone is injured. Even if no one is injured, it’s a good idea to request the police to come out to the scene of the accident.
Officers will write down all of the details you give them. They’ll talk to everyone involved, and they’ll often talk to any witnesses as well. They may even take photos. All of these details will help your lawyers to build your personal injury case to secure compensation.
If an ambulance was not necessary and you did not visit an urgent care center, visit a doctor as quickly after the accident as possible. It is common for accident victims not to realize that they’re injured immediately. The adrenaline rush from the accident can mask some of the pain and symptoms that can point to more severe injuries.
Exchange insurance information with the other parties involved, using the police to pass the information along, if necessary. Avoid making any unnecessary statements about the accident, especially to anyone else who was in the accident.
Many people say they’re sorry out of sympathy or habit, but statements like this can be taken out of context in an accident. If the other party or a witness hears you apologize, they may later claim that you admitted guilt.
Next, call the personal injury experts at Lipsitz, Ponterio & Comerford, LLC. Our attorneys have been representing clients in personal injury cases in Rochester, Syracuse, and Buffalo, NY since 1995. Our lawyers have won billions of dollars in damages for clients.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident in Buffalo, Rochester, or Syracuse, NY, please contact us for a free and confidential evaluation.
If you want attorneys who really care about you and your family, look no further. Everyone at that firm really goes out of their way to give you the best outcome possible. – Michelle A.
Your state’s law may limit your time to file a legal claim. For a free and confidential case evaluation, please complete this form.