Cycling is a popular form of exercise for the citizens of Florida, many of them swapping using a motor vehicle for a bicycle in the hot weather. Some people cycle mainly for leisure and exercise, while others use bicycles as their primary mode of transport to school, work and daily life. Although the number of bicycles on the roads of Orlando have increased, cyclists are at risk of accidents happening.
Bicycle accident statistics show that there is a higher risk of serious injuries compared to one with motor vehicles as there is no physical barrier behind the cyclist and the vehicle, and the cyclist has no exterior protection from other motorists apart from their helmet. Many drivers fail to take adequate care in the presence of a cyclist on the road which results to even more damage and large medical bills.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a bicycle accident in Orlando, you should speak with an Orlando bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible. Here at The Law Place, we have over 75 years of experience in dealing with personal injury claims, many of which including bicycle accidents. Once you get in contact with us, an experienced attorney from our law firm will do everything in their power to make sure you receive a fair settlement for your bike accident, and that you are compensated for all medical expenses, property damage and any pain and suffering caused as a result.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents in Orlando
Bicycle crashes are common on the roads of Orlando, and cyclists must be cautious when cycling to avoid being injured. However, distracted drivers still cause bicycle accidents to occur. Listed below are some of the most common causes of a bicycle crash in Orlando:
- Amount of cyclists – Orlando is a popular place for citizens, but also for tourists. Many people who are visiting do not know the local traffic laws and have a lack of experience in cycling. This is when an accident occurs, causing serious and catastrophic injuries.
- Negligent driving – A bicycle accident can happen due to another driver’s negligence. When a motor vehicle driver engages in reckless driving, driving under the influence (DUI) or fails to follow traffic signals, this is when cyclists are at risk.
- Visibility – Many bicycle accidents happen due to a lack of visibility on the roads. This is mainly common at night time, and if cyclists aren’t wearing night time protective gear.
- Vulnerability to the environment – Compared to motor vehicle drivers, cyclists are much more affected by road works and bad weather conditions. If there are snowy and icy roads and potholes, accidents are much more likely to happen.
Regardless of how your bicycle accident happened, you are entitled to compensation. Your Orlando bicycle accident lawyer will work hard to ensure that the settlement you receive is fair, and it will depend on details of your case such as if the accident was caused by you or another person. Speak to an experienced bicycle accident lawyer at The Law Place today, who will be able to provide you with a free case review and can explain your legal rights.
What Are the Common Injuries Resulting from a Bicycle Accident?
As mentioned previously, bicycle accidents can lead to a serious head injury and internal injuries, and in the worst case scenarios, bicyclist fatalities. Some of the most common injuries seen by our personal injury attorneys include:
- Road rash, bruises, cuts, gashes, and lacerations.
- Sprained, and broken bones.
- Skull fractures.
- Soft-tissue injuries.
- Head injuries, including traumatic brain injury.
- Internal bleeding and damage to organs.
- Permanent disability.
How much compensation you are entitled to following bicycle accident injuries will depend on their severity. If you have suffered from long-term severe injuries that require physical therapy and various medical appointments, your bicycle accident lawyer will be able to increase the value of your settlement. Even if the injuries suffered are minor, your Orlando bicycle accident attorney will fight to make sure you receive fair compensation.
What Should I Do Following a Bike Accident?
Undoubtedly, the moments following an accident are a stressful and emotional time. In order to protect your safety and make sure you receive a fair settlement from your insurance company or the responsible parties insurance company, you should take the following steps:
- Ensure your safety first – In all bicycle accident cases, the most important thing you should do is protect yourself. Accident victims should firstly check that they have not suffered any personal injuries and get to safety immediately. As a cyclist, it is vital that you remove yourself from the road as soon as possible.
- Contact law enforcement – You are required to notify the Florida department of police of any motor vehicle accident on the road immediately. Once you do so, they will file a police report detailing the evidence from the accident including the personal information of the drivers involved, any personal injuries, and any damage done to the vehicles.
- Collect evidence – It is important that you gather as much as evidence as you can from the accident scene. This includes personal information from those involved in the accident so that your Orlando bicycle accident lawyer can hold the responsible parties accountable. This refers to the license and registration number of the vehicles involves, photographs and witness information.
- Seek medical assistance – Even if the injuries sustained do not seem serious, you should always seek medical assistance to make sure none of the injuries can cause long-lasting damage. Medical records taken are needed by bicycle accident attorneys to make sure there is fair settlement rewarded in court.
- Contact your insurance company – Florida law requires that following any kind of road accident that you contact your insurance company immediately. It is important that you don’t give away too much information, as insurance companies are renowned for devaluing claims, so any additional information you give could be used to reduce your settlement.
- Call an attorney – Following bicycle accidents, it is important that you contact a lawyer immediately. They will be able to speak to your insurance company on your behalf to ensure they don’t try to trick you into giving wrong information to devalue your insurance coverage. They will communicate with the liable parties attorneys and go through carefully witness statements and your legal options.
What Compensation Am I Entitled to Following a Bicycle Accident?
If you or a loved one has been involved in an Orlando bicycle accident, it is a stressful and emotional time. It can cause both emotional and financial burden to your life, which is why it is important that you seek compensation. The accident settlement you receive will depend entirely on the amount of harm you have suffered and whether there was another party at fault for your accident.
When filing a bicycle accident claim for financial damages, Orlando bicycle accident attorneys can claim the following damages for your defense:
- Medical bills – You can recover compensation to reimburse any medical bills resulting from your injuries. This can include transport to and from medical appointments and future medical bills for long-lasting injuries such as spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries etc that occurred as a result of the bicycle crash.
- Lost wages – If you are unable to work because of your bicycle accident, your Orlando bicycle accident lawyer can help you recover compensation to cover lost wages including any future income.
- Property damage – If your bicycle or any personal valuable items were damaged in the Florida bicycle accident, you can claim compensation to cover the repair costs.
- Pain and suffering – Pain and suffering extends to more than just physical injuries, and you may have suffered severe emotional trauma as a result of the accident that now impedes your daily life. One of our Orlando bicycle accident lawyers can help you to claim
compensation for any emotional or physical trauma you have suffered, including a general loss of enjoyment in life.
- Wrongful death – In the worst bicycle accident case scenario, death can occur. If you have lost a loved one as a result of a bicycle accident in Orlando, you can file a wrongful death claim to cover the funeral costs and a loss of consortium.
Comparative Negligence in a Bicycle Accident Case
Many individuals involved in bicycle crashes are afraid to take legal action if they believe they are at fault for the accident. However, even if this is the case, you still may be entitled to compensation. The best course of action is to contact a bicycle accident attorney to understand your options moving forward.
In most traffic accident cases, it is common for more than one party to be the culprit. In a bicycle accident case, for example another driver may have hit you due to swerving into a bike lane or cutting you off through aggressive driving, however, you may have been riding whilst distracted, without a bicycle light, or violating any other bicycle regulation. In this case, it could be argued that both parties involved share a portion of the blame.
Florida’s comparative negligence law under Florida Statute 768.81 makes it plausible for both the defendant and the plaintiff to receive compensatory damages in a personal injury case based on their proportionate share of fault.
Determining Liability for Bike Crashes Settlements
In order to receive any compensation for medical expenses, lost wages and property damages in bicycle crashes cases, the negligent party for the collision must be established. The majority of bike accidents in Florida are caused by someone else’s negligence, a driver who is speeding, drunk driving or not paying attention to the roads ahead.
There are a number of parties that could be responsible for your bike accident, including:
- The driver – A car or truck driver may have caused your accident by acting negligently or carelessly. Some examples of negligent driving include distracted driving, reckless driving, driving under the influence, and swerving into bicycle lanes and driving in the same direction as the cyclist. Drivers are required to take extra care at night to look out for bicycle riders on the road and when they fail to do so, they could be found liable for your accident.
- A government entity – If your crash was a result of potholes or other unmarked obstructions on the road, Orlando bicycle accident lawyers may argue that a government entity was responsible for the crash.
- Another cyclist – Bicycle crashes do not have to involve other vehicles and can happen with another bike rider. If this is the case, you are still able to file a claim for any injuries or damages sustained as a result.
How do I Prove Liability in an Accident Claim in Orlando?
The legal process in Florida can be difficult, and proving liability to recover compensation can be a complicated process for accident victims. In all bicycle cases involving accidents, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible to establish the liable parties and build a strong case accordingly.
In order to prove liability for an accident claim, your attorney must prove the following:
- Duty of care – By law, all drivers in the state of Florida owe a duty of care to take appropriate cautions when driving. They must ensure the safety of all other road users, including cyclists, and staying out of the bicyclist’s path.
- A breach of this duty – It must be shown that another driver breached this duty of care by acting negligently, which could lead to them having their driver’s license removed.
- Causation – In order for a claim to be successful, your lawyer must demonstrate a link between the breached duty of care and any damages you have suffered as a result.
- Damages – To receive compensation for any injuries or property damage you have sustained, you must be able to show that you suffered damages. This includes any injuries you suffered, damage to your bicycle, pain and suffering, wrongful death, and lost wages.
Contact The Law Place Today
Injured bicyclists are common in Orlando, and if you have suffered any broken bones, damages and changes to your life, you should seek legal assistance immediately.
The best way for you to understand your legal options and receive the compensation you deserve is by speaking to a bike accident lawyer as soon as possible. They will use their expertise to investigate your case and build a strong defense on your behalf to ensure that you get the justice and compensation that is rightfully yours.
Here at The Law Place, we have over 75 years of combined experience in multiple practice areas, and we have gotten our client’s many substantial settlements over our years of practice. Our dedication to getting our clients the results they deserve has resulted in us having a very strong attorney-client relationship. We offer a free consultation so you can get legal advice from us with no strings attached.
We understand how stressful of a time this is, one that you shouldn’t go through alone.
Call us today to schedule a free case evaluation at (941) 444-4444. Our phone lines are always open.