The miles of empty roads and rolling hills in Bedford County make it a perfect place for a recreational cyclist to enjoy the open air. The relative absence of traffic allows children to ride bikes to school or just for fun with friends.

Sadly, motor vehicles often collide with cyclists. If you were in a car, truck, or bus accident while riding your bike, you deserve compensation from the negligent parties whose conduct contributed to your injuries. A seasoned personal injury attorney could review the accident records and assess whether you have a right to file a legal claim.

If so, a Bedford County bicycle accident lawyer could pursue the at-fault parties for damages to cover your medical expenses, diminished income, reduced quality of life, and more.

Negligent Drivers Cause Many Cycling Accidents

Drivers operating passenger vehicles, buses, or trucks frequently cause bicycle accidents throughout Bedford County. Despite laws requiring them to take due care when sharing the road with bicycles, many drivers fail to do so.

State law requires vehicles to allow a bicycle four feet of clearance when passing. If the vehicle cannot provide the bicycle the required distance, the vehicle must slow and wait until it can pass with four feet of clearance. Drivers must take care when opening a car door into traffic to prevent a collision with a bicycle.

A driver who violates any of these rules and causes a bike crash could be liable for the cyclist’s injuries. A cyclist could also contribute to an accident leading to his or her own injuries. When an injured person is negligent, the law allows them to collect reduced damages if another party’s negligence had a bigger impact on the accident.

Helmet Laws in Bedford County

State law requires children under 12 years old to wear bicycle helmets, though older cyclists may choose not to wear one. Helmets are a great source of protection for cyclists and can prevent significant head injuries if an accident occurs. A cyclist who suffers a severe injury that a helmet might have prevented could be found partially liable for his or her own injuries.

Pennsylvania Imposes Time Limits on Accident Claims

A statute of limitations is the time legally allotted for a person to bring a lawsuit. When a person sustains an injury and sues for damages, 42 P.S. § 5524 requires him or her to file a lawsuit within two years of the incident that caused the injury.

If a minor—someone under 18—sustains an injury, the law states that the two-year period does not begin until the minor’s 18th birthday. However, a parent or guardian could bring a lawsuit on the child’s behalf while the victim is still a minor. Claims are generally stronger when brought closer to the date of the injury, so it is wise for the parent of an injured child to consult a Bedford County bicycle wreck lawyer soon after the accident.

In some cases, the state or local government could have liability for a bicycle accident. If the vehicle that hit the cyclist was government-owned, the owner could be liable. Similarly, a government employer could be responsible if a public employee was on the clock when his or her negligent driving led to the collision. In cases where the government might be liable, an injured person must submit a written notice of claim against within six months of the incident. It is crucial to enlist the help of an experienced attorney immediately after a bicycle crash in Bedford County.

Bicycle Accidents Could Produce Significant Injuries

When bicycles share the road with cars, trucks, and buses, they are vulnerable to collisions that could cause the cyclist significant injury. Some of the most common injuries cyclists suffer in wrecks with automobiles include:

  • Road rash, the abrasions and friction burns that cyclists experience when their skin makes contact with the pavement;
  • Fractures and sprains to the hands, wrists, and legs;
  • Broken collarbones;
  • Whiplash and other soft tissue injuries to the neck and shoulders;
  • Rib fractures and lung injuries;
  • Facial injuries;
  • Skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries; and
  • Spinal cord injuries.

An injured cyclist is entitled to damages from any parties whose negligence contributed to the accident. A knowledgeable Bedford County bicycle accident attorney could advise a cyclist about calculating and documenting his or her losses to support a claim for maximum reimbursement.

Trust a Bedford County Bicycle Accident Attorney to Handle Your Claim

If you suffered injuries in a bike crash, a capable attorney could help you assert your claim for monetary damages. The negligent parties whose carelessness led to your injuries should pay for any harm they caused.

A Bedford County bicycle accident lawyer at Marcus & Mack could evaluate your situation and devise the most effective strategy to secure the financial recovery you deserve. Call today to schedule a consultation.

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Marcus & Mack

Marcus & Mack
57 S 6th Street,
The Mitchell House

Indiana PA   15701
1216 11th Ave
Suite 219

Altoona PA   16601
108 West Beaver Avenue,
Suite 203

State College PA  16801
334 Budfield St,

Johnstown PA  15904
12 West Long Ave.
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DuBois PA  15801