Bicycle crashes can lead to permanent physical injuries. Even when the physical damage heals completely, the psychological trauma of a bicycle accident could cause challenging symptoms for months or even years.
Our seasoned personal injury attorneys recognize how devastating these incidents can be. They also understand that most bicycle accidents involving motor vehicles are at least partially the driver’s fault.
When another party’s negligence causes your accident, you could be entitled to reimbursement of your accident-related expenses and monetary damages for your pain and suffering. Contact a Somerset bicycle accident lawyer soon after the incident to begin building your case for compensation.
Bicycle accidents often cause significant injuries to the rider; they are sometimes propelled over the handlebars and land forcefully on the ground or another vehicle. If the cyclist remains in his or her seat, the bike might land on its side, and the rider is dragged along the ground for some distance.
Cyclists may suffer from various injuries depending on the circumstances of the accident. If the rider’s body contacts the ground, he or she usually suffers road rash—the term for scrapes, abrasions, and friction burns that result when the skin is dragged on a rough surface. Other common injuries include sprains, fractures, and facial trauma. The worst incidents produce broken necks or backs, brain damage, and spinal cord injuries.
Cyclists frequently experience significant emotional distress after being hit by a car. Many develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or related symptoms. A Somerset bicycle accident attorney could help a rider obtain appropriate compensation for all of his or her accident-related losses, including psychological trauma.
When someone suffers an injury and seeks damages, he or she must prove another party’s negligence was the primary cause of the accident that led to his or her injuries. Negligence means a failure to take the degree of care a reasonable person would take to avoid harm to others.
Generally, bicycle wrecks occur when a driver does not take adequate measures to avoid injury to a cyclist. For example, 75 P.S. § 3303 requires drivers to allow four feet of clearance when passing a bicycle. If the driver passes too closely and causes an accident, the driver could be found negligent.
Importantly, the driver does not have to get a traffic citation to be found negligent. A diligent legal professional could gather evidence such as witness statements, surveillance video, dashcam footage, and cell phone records to demonstrate the driver’s carelessness. Any indication the driver might have prevented the accident if they had exercised more care could be evidence of negligence.
Pennsylvania law requires an injured person to file a lawsuit seeking damages no later than two years after suffering the injury. When a minor under the age of 18 gets hurt, the child’s two-year statute of limitations does not begin to start until his 18th birthday, meaning that such a victim has until age 20 to file suit. However, evidence often becomes lost or destroyed through time, so an experienced Somerset bike crash lawyer advises a parent or guardian to sue on the child’s behalf within two years because evidence disappears and claims weaken over time.
The state of Pennsylvania or a local government could have liability for a bicycle accident if the government owned the at-fault vehicle or employed its driver. In such situations, the injured party must file a notice of claim with the appropriate government office or agency before they can file a lawsuit.
If the claim is against the state, the injured person must file the notice within six months of the incident.
You must hold the negligent driver accountable when you or your child suffers harm in a bike collision. They are responsible for paying your out-of-pocket expenses plus monetary damages for your pain, emotional suffering, and other accident-related losses.
A Somerset bicycle accident lawyer could ensure that all negligent parties provide appropriate compensation. Call today to speak with a knowledgeable attorney at Marcus & Mack.
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