The Commonwealth of Virginia routinely ranks as one of the safest states in the country for bicyclists, but hundreds of bicycle accidents still happen each year. Bicyclists who are hit by motor vehicles are more likely to suffer serious injury or death in a collision. If you are injured in a bicycle accident, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced attorney.
At Coletrane & Messersmith, we represent individuals who have been seriously hurt by bicycle accidents in Newport News, Hampton, and Hampton Roads. Our legal team has recovered millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for our clients.
Virginia Bicycle Accident Statistics
Virginia has invested millions in creating bike trails, cycling lanes, and shared pathways throughout the Commonwealth. The state boasts over 800 miles of bicycle routes, including the Virginia Capital Trail, which connects Williamsburg to Richmond. Yet, despite all of these efforts, hundreds of people are still injured or killed each year. According to the most recent data available from the Virginia Highway Safety Office:
- There were 651 bicycle crashes across the Commonwealth, representing 0.5% of all traffic accidents.
- There were 13 fatal crashes and over 600 injury crashes.
- 128 cyclists were seriously injured as a result of a bicycle accident accounting for 1.8% of all traffic serious injuries.
- In nearly half (45.5%) of all reported bicycle accidents, there was no improper action on behalf of the cyclist.
As more Virginians turn to biking for recreational purposes and commuting to school or work, the frequency of bicycle accidents is bound to increase. Over 90% of all bicycle accidents involve some form of injury, so it is important to discuss your case with a qualified Newport News bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Leading Causes of Bicycle Accidents
Bicycle accidents can be caused by several factors. Many of the accidents are completely preventable caused by driver inattention, driver aggression, or speeding. Even if you are unsure of what caused the accident, you should still consult with an attorney regarding the incident. If another person was at fault for your injuries or the death of your loved one, you might be entitled to compensation.
Leading causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Improper lane changing
- Improper passing
- Failure to look
- Failure to yield/failure to stop
- Aggressive driving
In some circumstances, a bicycle accident may be caused by a defective or dangerous part. Depending on what caused the accident, you might be entitled to pursue a lawsuit against a manufacturer, bike rental company, or another negligent party. Call our office to discuss your legal options with one of our experienced bicycle accident lawyers today.
Common Injuries in Bicycle Accidents
When a motor vehicle collides with a cyclist, the results are devastating. Even low-speed crashes can cause horrific injuries that leave a bicyclist incapacitated.
Common injuries in bicycle accidents:
- Head and neck injuries
- Brain damage/traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Spinal cord trauma
- Broken bones and lacerations
- Road rash
- Damage to the extremities
- Internal organ damage
If you are seriously injured in a bicycle accident in Newport News, Hampton, or anywhere in Hampton Roads, you need an experienced attorney to get the recovery you deserve. Our lawyers fight hard to ensure that every client receives the maximum compensation possible for their injuries.
What Is the Statute of Limitations in a Bicycle Accident Case?
It is crucial to act fast in a bicycle accident case, as you only have a limited amount of time to file a claim for damages based on personal injury. According to Virginia law, you only have two (2) years from the date of the bicycle accident to bring a lawsuit. Failure to bring a claim within the statute of limitations could result in your right to compensation being denied.
While the two-year time period may seem like a long time, personal injury lawsuits can take months to prepare. Therefore, it is crucial to consult with a bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible to ensure that you receive the most extensive recovery possible.
What Is Contributory Negligence?
The Commonwealth of Virginia is one of only a few states that follow strict contributory negligence. This means that if an injured party were found to be even 1% at fault for the accident that caused their injuries, they would be denied compensation.
Knowing the harsh realities of Virginia’s pure contributory negligence rule, insurance companies will use every strategy possible to put you at least partially to blame for your injuries. It is imperative to consult with an attorney as early as possible and to allow them to negotiate the case with the insurance adjuster or negligent party.
Injured in a Bicycle Accident? Contact Our Office.
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a bicycle accident, contact our office today. All consultations are free and without obligation to retain our services. We will come to you at home or in the hospital to discuss your case and whether you should pursue a claim for damages against a liable party.
Call (757) 821-6949 to get started. Our bicycle accident lawyers are here to help you get the financial justice you deserve. Do not wait until it is too late.