According to AAA, Florida leads the nation in fatal bicycle accidents. The latest report from 2017 indicates that nearly 800 people die because of bicycle crashes across the state each year.
Perhaps the main reason for this statistic is the sunny weather and ease of getting around most larger cities like Orlando and West Palm Beach on foot or by bike. However, vehicles simply not watching where they are going is a big part of the cause, too.
If you or a loved one has been harmed or killed while on a bicycle, you may have a Law claim. While most bike accidents that lead to a lawsuit involve a vehicle, that is not always the case.
Causes of Bicycle Accident Lawsuits in Florida
Some of the most common causes of bike crashes in Florida will involve:
- Collision with a Vehicle. Most crashes that lead to lawsuits deal with a bicyclist and a driver. Many drivers are not on the lookout for bicyclists like they should be, and that leads to crashes.
- Maintenance issues. Some bike accidents are caused by unexpected or hidden maintenance issues on the road or sidewalk. Going over roads that need repaired or have only light coverings over holes can lead to serious injuries. In those situations, either the property owner or the city could be to blame for the crash.
- Poor city planning. Some crashes are the result of inherently dangerous roads, intersections, or other areas. In those cases, your lawsuit could actually be against the city, such as in Fort Lauderdale, West Palm Beach, or Orlando.
- Construction site errors. Riding by a construction site can also be dangerous if it is poorly maintained. Failing debris and other hazards could also easily cause a bike crash.
Common Bicycle-Vehicle Crash Causes
When bikes and cars collide, it is easy to see who will “win” in that type of crash. Bicycle injuries can be very severe when they involve a car or truck.
These collisions are most often caused by the vehicle’s driver. Common causes include:
- Failure to follow traffic signs and signals
- Not yielding properly to bicycles
- Driver inattention
- Opening doors into a bicycle’s lane of travel
- Driving under the influence
- Speeding or driving erratically
- Left turns across traffic
- Right turns into a bike that is traveling right beside them
Head injuries, scrapped arms and legs, broken limbs, and other severe injuries could result from any of these types of crashes. It is crucial to get medical care right away after this kind of accident.
Getting Compensation for a Bike Crash in Florida
Florida has a no-fault law when it comes to vehicle accidents. Those laws can extend to bicyclists as well. In general, a bicyclist will talk to their own insurance company first, even before determining if anyone else was also to blame for the crash.
However, this rule only applies if the bicyclist has auto insurance. If they do not, then the cyclist can file a claim under the responsible driver’s insurance.
Getting Help with Your Bicycle Crash Claim
Even if you are not sure if you have a bike accident claim, it is always a good idea to talk to a lawyer about your situation. Part of what we do at VG Law Group, LLP is investigating your case. We will gather facts and information to help you decide what you should do next—whether that means starting an insurance claim or a lawsuit.
Insurance companies do not always take bike injuries seriously. But, these crashes can lead to long-term injuries and damages. They can change your life forever. At VG Law Group, LLP, we will work with you to help you not only take appropriate Law action, but also point you in the right direction when it comes to dealing with medical care, missing work, and a lot more.
When you hire VG Law Group, you put our team on your side—and we care about your long-term recovery. Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment with a member of our team.