Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Bicycle accident attorneys and lawyers at Parke Gordon Law Firm assist clients who have been in bike accidents in Spokane, Washington, and Coeur d’Alene, Idaho by getting them the compensation they deserve. Our Spokane personal injury lawyers will take steps to ensure your rights are fully protected. The law office of Parke Gordon Law Firm will seek recovery for all of your damages and maximize your settlement. Our attorneys have successfully represented injured bicyclists and obtained impressive settlements for our bicycle accident clients.
Bicycle Accident Injuries in Spokane, WA
Bicycle accident injuries are often serious due to the lack of protection to bicyclists and the size and force differences when a vehicle collides with a bicycle. The attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm will help ensure that our bicycle accident clients obtain appropriate medical care and treatment and ensure that the negligent motorist is held accountable. Take the stress out of your bike accident by hiring an experienced bike accident lawyer to settle your case. At Parke Gordon Law Firm, our attorneys believe every client deserves fair representation not just big insurance companies with deep pockets.
Five Top Causes of Bike Accidents
Bike accidents involving a vehicle usually happen because the driver is not paying attention or a driver fails to yield to the cyclist. Below are five scenarios of the top reasons bike accidents occur.
1. A car pulls out in front of a biker from a side street.
To avoid it: When you are biking, make yourself aware to drivers by being visible. Wear brightly colored clothing, use a headlight or flashing light even during the day. Make eye contact, wave or yell so you know the driver is aware of you. Anticipate cars pulling out from the right and prepare yourself to stop if needed. You can also ride further out to the left to create more angels of visibility and giving you more time to move out of the way if necessary.
2. A car attempts to make a right turn in front of a biker.
To avoid it: Ride further left in the lane so a car can’t get around you as easily. If a car still cuts you off, riding further to the left will give you more room to swerve if necessary.
3. A parked car opens their car door blocking the biker without enough time to stop or swerve out of the way.
To avoid it: Ride further to the left even if it puts you more into the lane of traffic. You could also keep a lookout for cars parking or drivers sitting in their car.
4. A biker is hit from the rear end. Rear end collisions are the most common way drunk drivers hurt or kill bikers.
To avoid it: Ride on roads with less traffic and be visible. Wear headlights, taillights, reflective gear or anything else that will make you stand out to drivers.
5. A biker attempts to make a left-hand turn in front of a biker.
To avoid it: Ride where you can be seen. Drivers generally won’t see you riding on the sidewalk to ride on the street. Be aware of what is coming up in front of you to avoid traffic, bushes or parked cars.
Though you can ride in the street, be courteous of drivers and abide by traffic laws.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
A bicycle accident involving cars can involve major injuries or even wrongful death. It is important to know what to do after a bicycle accident to receive the best settlement possible. The steps you take after a bike accident have a big impact on how much you recover for your injuries and any damages to your bike. It will also affect the results of any lawsuit from the accident. The following are some steps to follow after a bicycle accident to help your case.
- Call 911 and wait for police to arrive. It is important to wait for the police to arrive after an accident so a police report will be taken and filed. Even if you do not feel you were injured, a police report will make a big difference in the outcome of your case.
- Tell your version of what happened to the police officer. Be sure to report all injuries even if you think they are minor. Minor injuries can later become major.
- Gather the personal information of the driver and any witnesses of the accident. Information to gather includes their full name, phone number, address and driver’s license number of the driver. A name and phone number of each witness is sufficient. If you are too injured to gather this information, ask a bystander to do it for you.
- Take photos of the bicycle accident scene. Photos such as your bike, the vehicle that hit you and any skid marks on the road are great evidence that can greatly help your case.
- Write down your statement of what happened as well as any injuries you incurred from the accident.
- The last but most important step after a bicycle accident is to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm to handle your case.
How to Prepare Your Kids to Avoid a Bike Crash
- Make sure your kids are wearing a good bike helmet whenever they are on their bike. A helmet will help protect your child from head and brain injuries.
- Prepare your child’s bike with a tune-up. For example, wipe off the frame, make sure bolts are tight, lubricate the chain, check the brakes and inflate any flat tires. This will help prevent common bike accidents such as a chain breaking or a flat tire.
- Practice helping your kids avoid hazards such as large rocks, toys, potholes, etc. while riding their bike.
- Teach your kids their bike is to be treated like a vehicle, not a toy. Bicyclists have the same rules to follow as a vehicle whenever it enters the roadway.
- Start with teaching some basic rules of the road such as stay to the right, keep a safe distance from other bikes or people, look both ways, etc.
Bicycle Accidents Caused by Road Rage
A study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reported some 80 percent of drivers expressed feeling road rage behind the wheel within the past year. In addition, about 8 million U.S. drivers engaged in extreme road rages such as purposely hitting another vehicle or bicyclist. Road rage is an all too common occurrence and is extremely dangerous for a bicyclist. A bicyclist does not have 3,000 pounds of steel around them for protection. Here’s how to handle a driver with road rage when riding your bike.
If you are riding your bicycle around a driver who is yelling out the window towards you, remember to remain calm. Follow the rules of the road concerning riding a bicycle. When a bicyclist is riding their bike in the roadway, legally they are to follow the same rules of the road as a vehicle. If the bicyclist is riding their bike on the sidewalk, they are to follow the same rules as a pedestrian.
An expert from the Law Enforcement Bicycle Association says motorists want to see the cyclist do something wrong so they can complain about it. If you’re obeying all traffic laws, you are not at fault. If the situation is bad enough, consider reporting the aggressive driver to police. Make a note of the vehicle make, model, color, and plate number to report it to the police. Also make note of the physical characteristics of the driver, the time of day and where the incident occurred to tell the police. The more detail the better. It is also extremely helpful to talk to witnesses and ask for their phone number so the police can get a statement from them. Without a witness statement, it is likely the police will not get involved.
Leave a Road Rage Situation
The best tactic in a road rage situation is to remove yourself. Get to somewhere safe where the driver is not able to hit you while riding a bike. You could move onto the sidewalk, slow down and let the car pass, turn on the next street, make a legal U-turn, etc.
Defend Yourself from a Driver’s Road Rage if Necessary
If the driver continues to act aggressively and you are unable to get to a safe place, you do have a right to defend yourself in most states to prevent being injured. Call 911 immediately and leave the call live even if you are unable to talk to the dispatcher. Pull over and put your bike between yourself and the driver. Never get violent against a person or their vehicle even if you feel threatened. Doing so legally makes you the aggressor. Engage only as much as you need to in order to create distance and get away.
Bicycle Accidents After Dark
Bicycling after dark involves many risks. The most obvious is visibility. Studies have shown that fatal accidents on the road are three times more likely to happen at night. Nowhere is worst to ride your bike at night than in a low lite urban area. Other risks of riding at night include increased traffic during rush hour, slowed reaction times, etc. Here are some things a bicyclist riding at night can do to stay safe:
- Be visible. Use lights on your bike and wear reflective clothing.
- Don’t weave in and out of lanes. Stay straight and predictable to make it easy for drivers to be aware of you.
- Always follow traffic laws just as if you were driving a car. In the even of a bicycle accident, a bike is considered the same as any other vehicle when riding in the road.
- Be aware of unforeseen dangers such as animals or other people walking or riding a bike.
- Be prepared. Always have the right equipment in case of a flat tire, bad weather or any other kind of emergency.
Contact a Spokane Bicycle Accident Attorney for a Free Consultation
Contact the personal injury attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm in Spokane for a free consultation. Our Spokane law firm is on your side and will fight for your rights. Parke Gordon Law Firm in Spokane believes every client deserves fair representation against big insurance companies with deep pockets. The trusted attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm can usually tell you over the phone if you have a good case. Call our Spokane law office today at (509) 482-7274 to get started on your case.
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