People in motor vehicles are supposed to share the road with smaller vehicles. That means motorcycles, mopeds and bicycles. Unfortunately for those who like to commute by bike, many people in larger vehicles fail to adequately check for bikes when merging, turning or backing up.
While you may take every precaution, from wearing a helmet and signaling your turns to wearing special clothes and using headlight or reflectors, other drivers can still make mistakes that can leave you critically injured or worse. When that happens, you could face massive medical bills and weeks of lost wages.
Bicycle accidents happen all the time. In fact, in the city of Vista alone in 2014, there were 20 accidents with bicyclists who got injured or killed. While twenty might not seem like a high number, consider the fact that bicyclists account for a minuscule portion of all traffic. In recent years, California as a state has had one of the highest rates of bicyclist fatalities and injuries. Although statistics for more recent years are not yet available, reports on news media make it clear that more people are biking in California and as a result, more people are getting into serious accidents with motor vehicles.
Bicycles always lose in crashes with bigger vehicles
A person in a car, truck or SUV who fails to notice a cyclist is unlikely to sustain serious injuries in the crash. Fatal accidents involving bicycles may not even cause substantial cosmetic damage to the motor vehicle involved. Meanwhile, the person on the bike could be severely injured or killed.
While bicycles allow their riders to enjoy the fresh air, avoid the worst traffic and reduce their carbon footprint, they offer very little protection in cases of collision. Your body will often absorb the brunt of the collision, and it is also common for cyclists to get thrown from their bike, possibly into traffic.
Sometimes, you don’t even need to get into an accident with a car to sustain serious injuries. Doorings, which happen when a driver or passenger in a motor vehicle opens a door into bicycle traffic, can cause severe injuries or even fatalities.
Serious injuries often result from bike accidents
Head injuries, spinal injuries and broken bones are all possible after a car-bike collision or dooring accident. Any of these could require thousands of dollars worth of medical care at a time when you may be unable to work. For the person on the bike, these collisions can have catastrophic effects.
From lost wages and staggering medical bills to permanent injuries and disabilities, bike accidents pose a real risk to your well-being and future. You shouldn’t have to bear that burden alone, especially if you were following the law. If you have experienced a serious bike accident involving a motor vehicle, you should explore all of your options for compensation, including insurance and civil suits.