If you’ve suffered an injury due to a bicycle accident, then the Sacramento bicycle accident lawyers here at Cutter Law P.C. are the ones to call. Our attorneys are well-educated, experienced legal professionals who fight aggressively for you in a court of law. We fully understand how awful bicycle accidents are, and that’s why we make sure you’re represented to the best of our abilities. So, if you’ve suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, especially if that accident involved a motor vehicle, then contact us for a no-obligation consultation. Our Sacramento bicycle accident law firm is always standing by to take your case.
Should You Call A Bicycle Accident Lawyer In Sacramento?
In short, if a motor vehicle collides with you on your bicycle for any reason, you should contact a bicycle accident lawyer in Sacramento. Even if you’re unsure if you have a case, call for a consultation.
However, while we highly recommend you contact our lawyers in any event of a bicycle collision with a motor vehicle, the most successful bicycle accident cases typically involve the following factors:
- Negligence of the Driver: Some examples of negligence on the part of the automobile driver include aggressive driving, careless driving, distracted driving, and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Basically, any actions that involve the driver of the car breaching their implied duty of care constitute negligence.
- Negligence of the Bicyclist: The most common examples of negligence on the part of the bicyclist includes failure to obey traffic laws, aggressive riding, and riding your bicycle under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Remember, bicycles are vehicles. They must obey the same laws as other vehicles on the road.
Proving Negligence Caused Your Bicycle Accident Injury In Sacramento
Generally, to make a successful case for your bicycle accident injury in Sacramento, our attorneys need to prove that either negligence or recklessness caused the accident. By that, we mean that either the bicyclist or the automobile driver had to cause the accident due to either their negligence or reckless behavior.
To prove negligence or reckless behavior caused your bicycle accident injury in Sacramento, our attorneys must show four things in court:
- 1 – The Driver Owed A “Duty Of Care”: The first thing we must prove in court is that the driver owed you a duty of care. For example, if you hit a pothole on your bike and it caused your accident, then the organization responsible for maintaining that section of road owed you a duty of care to repair the pothole.
- 2 – The Driver Breached Their Duty Of Care: The second thing we must prove in a court of law is that the other driver breached their duty of care. Examples of breaching a duty of care while behind the wheel include reckless driving, speeding, and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- 3 – The Breach Of Care Caused The Accident: Once we’ve established that the other driver both had and breached a duty of care, we must prove that the breach caused the accident. For example, if the driver ran a red light, causing them to hit you on your bike, then their breach of care (running the light) caused your accident.
- 4 – The Accident Caused Damages Or Harm: Once we’ve established the first three things, we have to prove that the accident caused harm or damages eligible for compensation. A prime example of recoverable damage due to a bicycle accident is an injury that requires medical intervention.
Bicycle Accident Injury Statistics
Like accidents involving motor vehicles, bicycle accidents often involve serious injury. However, in accidents between bicycles and motor vehicles, it’s more-often-than-not the bicyclist who suffers injuries. And, the injuries suffered by the bike rider are often far, far worse than those seen in traditional car-on-car accidents. To show just how much worse bicycle accidents can be, here are some statistics:
- From 2013 to 2017, Sacramento County reported 2,851 bicycle collisions and 56 deaths (California Office of Traffic Safety).
- California’s bicycle accident average is 1,060 accidents per year (California Office of Traffic Safety).
- An average of 12.6 bicyclists die in collisions with motor vehicles in California every year (Berkeley).
- As much as 41% of bicycle accidents involving cars take place at intersections (FHWA).
Common Causes Of Bicycle Accidents In Sacramento
It’s unfortunate how common bicycle accidents in Sacramento really are. As we mentioned above, there are more than 1,000 bicycle collisions in Sacramento County every year. But that begs the question, what typically causes all these accidents? Well, generally, the most common causes of bicycle accidents in Sacramento include:
- Disregarding road signs and other traffic laws
- Cars driving without headlights
- Bicyclist visibility
- Stopping or turning without warning
- A stationary car opening a door, hitting a cyclist
- Distracted driving or bicycle riding
How To Protect Yourself While Riding A Bicycle On The Road
By now it’s probably abundantly clear how dangerous bicycle accidents are for the cyclist. However, don’t fret. There are several things that you can do, as a cyclist, to protect yourself while sharing the road with motor vehicles. To help protect yourself on the road, try some of the following tips:
- Remain highly visible. Dress in bright and reflective clothing, and don’t be afraid to use head and tail lights on your bike
- Be ready to break suddenly when nearing an intersection
- Keep a close watch on all other drivers on the road
- Remember that you can be “dead right,” and that having the right of way doesn’t mean that an accident is any less likely to cause an injury or death.
- Stay out of car blind spots
- Ride in a single file line when sharing the road with other cyclists
- Cars are unpredictable, so always have an escape route in the back of your mind
- Never pass a car on the right in an intersection or near driveways
- Don’t ride against traffic
- Stop at stop signs and red lights
- Use hand signals when turning or stopping in high-traffic areas
- Always assume that whatever car in your way can’t see you
- Never dart out into traffic, even if you have the right of way.
What Should You Do If You’re Involved In A Bicycle Accident In Sacramento?
If you’ve just had a bicycle accident in Sacramento, do the following:
- Remain Calm: The first thing to remember in the event of an accident of any kind is to remain calm. Panicking never solves anything and always makes things worse.
- Collect The Driver’s Information: If you can, make sure to talk to the other driver and take their information, including their name, insurance provider and policy. Also collect the make, model and year of their car, and any injuries they may have suffered.
- Contact The Police And Wait For Them To Arrive: Immediately following a bicycle accident in Sacramento, contact the police and wait for them to arrive on the scene – even if you’re unhurt.
- Speak To An Officer At The Scene: Unfortunately, officers sometimes take statements from drivers while ignoring the cyclist involved. So, if you’ve been in an accident, make sure you get a chance to speak to the officer on the scene.
- Document Everything: After the accident, document everything that transpired, including what you reported to the police, the details of the accident and any injuries you suffered. Also get the driver’s name and insurance information. If the accident damaged your bicycle or the other driver’s car, take pictures and document them as well.
- Get Checked Out By A Doctor: As soon as you’ve talked to the police and they’ve released you from the scene, head straight to a doctor. You may have suffered internal injuries or other injuries without symptoms. Don’t risk it, always go to the doctor after any kind of bicycle accident.
- Contact A Bicycle Accident Lawyer In Sacramento: Once you’re done at the hospital, contact a bicycle accident lawyer in Sacramento from Cutter Law P.C. for a no-obligation consultation.
Contact Our Sacramento Bicycle Accident Lawyers Today
Our Sacramento bicycle accident law firm wins cases for our clients so that they get the compensation they rightly deserve. In fact, we recently won $1.895 million via Jury Verdict for a cyclist in Sonoma County. Moreover, We have the education, experience, and dedication to fight for our clients in a court of law aggressively, and we always come highly recommended by our satisfied clients. We’ve also received awards from the CCTLA, we’ve got a 10.0 Avvo Rating, and we’re members of the American Association for Justice Leaders Forum. So, if you need the help of our Sacramento bicycle accident lawyers, then contact Cutter Law P.C. for a no-obligation consultation today.