Were You Injured in a Bicycle Accident in Long Beach?
Unfortunately, bicycle accidents are a common occurrence in California. Cyclists can sustain severe and fatal injuries in bicycle accidents because bikes don’t provide protection comparable to motor vehicles. According to California Healthline, about 455 bike riders were killed in traffic accidents from 2016 through 2018. If you were injured in a Long Beach bicycle accident due to someone else’s negligence, you have the right to seek compensation. Get an experienced Long Beach bicycle accident lawyer to help you hold the at-fault party responsible for your losses.
At Belmont Accident Lawyers, we serve personal injury victims throughout the greater Long Beach area. Call us today to schedule a free consultation.
Why Belmont Accident Lawyers As Your Long Beach Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
At Belmont Accident Lawyers, our Long Beach bicycle accident lawyers have successfully represented numerous bicycle accident victims and helped them obtain the compensation they deserve. Our law firm has extensive experience dealing with aggressive insurance companies and has a proven track record of obtaining the maximum compensation available.
We know how to handle each insurance company and the deceptive tactics they use against bicycle accident victims. At Belmont Accident Lawyers, our bicycle accident attorneys have successfully recovered millions of dollars in settlements for our clients.
Do You Need a Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
A bike accident lawyer can prove that the other party is responsible for the crash and the damages suffered. Bicycle accident attorneys can establish how the bike rider did everything they could to avoid the accident. Most bicycle accident cases don’t go to trial, however, it’s vital to have an experienced bike accident lawyer in the event your claim goes to court. You don’t have to struggle with lost wages, property damage, medical costs involved, pain, and suffering alone.
Our compassionate team advocates for injured cyclists to help them recover fair and full compensation after a serious accident. Our law firm operates on a contingency fee basis and maintains a 99% win rate. This means our clients will not pay any legal fees until we win their personal injury case. If we don’t win, you pay us nothing.
We deal with insurance companies on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery. The other driver’s insurance company may try to reach out to you immediately after the bike crash. It’s best not to disclose details about the accident or your injuries to the insurance company, but to consult with a Long Beach bicycle accident attorney first. At Belmont Accident Lawyers, we are dedicated to protecting victims’ rights and obtaining the maximum compensation available.
Statute of Limitations for Bicycle Accident Cases
Don’t hesitate to schedule a consultation to learn more about your legal options. It’s essential to secure legal counsel quickly for a Long Beach bike accident case. The statute of limitations in California is two years from the date the injury occurred. Bicycle accident claims against a government agency must be filed within six months of the incident. If you have questions about how much time you have to file a personal injury claim, it’s best to consult with a Long Beach bicycle accident lawyer.
How Much is My Bicycle Accident Claim Worth?
The value of your bicycle accident settlement will depend on the liability and damages. Factors can include the extent of your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain, and suffering.
Economic damages including medical bills and physical therapy bills are generally easy to prove. However, more subjective damages like the loss of enjoyment of life, disfigurement, emotional trauma, mental distress, and suffering are more difficult to prove without the legal advocacy of an experienced personal injury lawyer.
A Long Beach bicycle accident attorney can help you build a strong case backed with compelling evidence including CCTV camera footage, police reports, witness statements, and expert witnesses. It’s invaluable to have the best legal representation on your side to help you calculate and prove the extent of your losses.
What Are the Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents?
Some of the most common causes of Long Beach bicycle accidents include the following:
- Head-on Collisions – A large percentage of fatal bike accidents involve a car making direct contact with the front of the bike.
- Tailgating – When drivers tailgate, they do not leave enough room to brake for abrupt stops and can hit the vehicle in front of them.
- Speeding – Accidents occurring at high speeds increase the severity of the accident and impact of the collision.
- Dooring – “Dooring” occurs when a car door is opened or left open to oncoming traffic. A cyclist may not be able to avoid crashing into the car door.
- Drunk Driving – Intoxicated motorists endanger their own lives, as well as the lives of other motorists. In 2020, there were 11,654 traffic fatalities caused by alcohol-impaired driving.
- Distracted Driving – Using cellphones, eating, or not paying attention while driving presents a serious risk to everyone on the road.
- Bicycle Defects – Common manufacturing defects include faulty brakes, bad tires, and steering complications.
Who Is at Fault in Most Bicycle Accidents?
After an accident, it’s essential to prove that the other party was negligent and that their actions were a direct cause of your losses.
California is a pure negligence state which means that accident victims can still recover damages if they are partially at fault for the accident. Proving that the other party was negligent and caused the accident, can increase the percentage of damages you may be able to recover.
To prove liability, the plaintiff must first prove that the defendant owed a “duty of care” to the plaintiff. Motorists in California have a duty of care to operate their motor vehicles safely and obey traffic laws and signals. The plaintiff must also prove that the breached the duty of care. For example, if the defendant ran a red light and collided with the plaintiff’s bike, the defendant breached the duty of care to follow the traffic laws and caused the accident.
What Should You Do After a Bicycle Accident?
If you are involved in a bicycle crash, you can take the following proactive actions:
1. Check on Yourself and Others
Move your bike out of the way of traffic and ensure you are out of harm’s way.
2. Call the Police
Call the police and wait for them to come to the scene of the accident to file a police report. Ensure you get a copy of the police report.
3. Gather Evidence
Take photos of the damage to your bicycle and of any visible injuries. If eyewitnesses are present, get their contact information.
4. Seek Medical Attention
It’s essential to your personal injury case that you seek medical attention immediately after the auto accident. A medical professional will produce medical records of your injuries pertaining to the hit-and-run accident and will prepare a treatment plan for you.
5. Consult a Long Beach Bicycle Accident Attorney
Bicycle accidents can cause catastrophic injury and tremendous damage, changing injured victims’ lives forever. After a bicycle crash, it’s important to know your legal options. Consulting with an experienced bicycle accident attorney is vital to your bicycle accident case. Bicycle accident lawyers can help you calculate and prove the extent of your damages, including more subjective damages like pain and suffering.
What Should You Do After a Bicycle Hit-and-Run?
According to California law, regardless of who is at fault in an accident, it is illegal for a person involved to leave the scene of the accident without providing identifying information. A hit-and-run can be determined as a misdemeanor or felony offense. California Vehicle Code 20002 applies when the driver leaves the accident scene without providing information where only property damage occurred. This can result in a misdemeanor charge.
According to California law, all persons involved in an accident must do the following:
- Stop and pull over their vehicle to the nearest location that doesn’t impede traffic or endanger other motorists’ safety.
- Locate and notify the other party of your name and address.
- Provide your driver’s license information and car registration upon request.
- If you can’t locate the owner of the vehicle, you must leave a note with your name and address. You must also contact the local police station to notify them of the accident. Legal penalties for a hit-and-run accident that does not involve injuries or death can include imprisonment in a county jail for up to 6 months and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
If the other party flees the scene of the accident, take note of the make, model, and color of the other vehicle involved, as well as the appearance of the other driver.
California Vehicle Code 20001 applies when someone flees the accident scene where another person suffers injury or death as a result of an accident. In this case, a misdemeanor or felony can be charged for the hit-and-run.
If charged as a misdemeanor, the crime is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year and/or a fine between $1,000 and $10,000.
If charged as a felony, the crime is punishable by imprisonment in a state jail for up to four years and/or a fine between $1,000 and $10,000.
How Can A Hit-And-Run Accident Attorney Help?
An auto accident attorney can help you collect evidence and thoroughly investigate the hit-and-run case. A hit-and-run lawyer can help you hold the at-fault party responsible for the damages they caused. If you were hurt by a driver who fled the scene of the accident, don’t hesitate to consult an auto accident lawyer immediately.
As a California driver, it is likely that you carry uninsured motorist coverage. A lawyer can also help the hit-and-run victim recover compensation under their uninsured motorist coverage if the other driver cannot be located, or is not insured.
What Are the Most Common Injuries of a Bike Accident?
Cyclists are at a high risk of sustaining accident injuries due to the lack of protection comparable to a motor vehicle. Regardless of the types of injuries sustained, it’s crucial to always seek a medical evaluation following the accident. Common injuries suffered in a bike accident include the following:
- Head trauma – Head injuries can range from concussions to more serious injuries including a fractured skull, and traumatic brain injury (TBI). These serious injuries can be fatal. Helmets reduce the risk of sustaining a head injury by more than 50%.
- Broken bones and fractures – It’s a natural instinct to use your arms to brace for an impact. This can leave a biker’s arms in a vulnerable position and can result in injuries ranging from fractures and broken bones to nerve damage.
- Spinal trauma – When the spinal cord is injured from the impact of a bicycle crash, it can result in severe injuries including paralysis. Paralysis is considered a serious injury that usually results in permanent disability for the bike rider.
- Neck injuries – These injuries can occur from rapid movements of the head due to a forceful impact. Whiplash is a common type of neck injury sustained in auto accidents, especially rear-end accidents. The symptoms can last months to years depending on the severity.
- Soft tissue damage – Soft tissue damage occurs when trauma occurs in one’s muscles, ligaments, or tendons. The best way to help prevent this kind of injury is by wearing protective gear. It’s best to have a helmet, heavy-duty jacket, full-fingered gloves, and over-the-ankle footwear to help protect you.
- Road rash – road rash occurs when a bike rider makes contact with the pavement, causing scrapes and abrasions.
Long Beach Bike Accident Statistics
Unfortunately, bike accidents are common in the United States. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), there were 1,260 preventable bicycle accident deaths in 2020. Males accounted for 89% of all bike accident fatalities. Notably, cyclist deaths caused by motor vehicle collisions increased by 9% since 2019, from 856 to 932.
In Los Angeles County, 2,601 bike crash victims were killed and injured in 2020. There were 221 bicyclists injured and killed in Long Beach bike accidents.
Dangerous Long Beach Roads and Intersections
Long Beach is one of the most populated cities within the Southern California region, particularly in the county of Los Angeles. Long Beach has a population of over 450,000 people and sees about 6 million visitors each year. Although Long Beach is recognized as a bike-friendly city with its interconnected bicycle routes and beach and river paths, it is a congested city that sees heavy traffic. Whether you’re cruising down the Pacific Coast Highway or are taking the Long Beach Traffic Circle, it’s important to stay alert and look out for potential hazards.
Some of the most dangerous intersections in Long Beach include the following:
Contact Our Bicycle Accident Lawyer Near You
Belmont Accident Lawyers are committed to helping bike accident victims obtain compensation for their losses. We understand personal injury victims experience losses including medical expenses, costs for future medical treatment, lost income, lost earning capacity, and loss of enjoyment of life.
We want our clients to be able to focus on their recovery and family during this difficult period. You are our priority. We will fight to protect your rights and best interests including your physical, mental, emotional, and financial well-being. We serve clients in the greater Long Beach area and across Los Angeles County. Have you suffered a serious injury in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence? Call our law office today to learn more about your legal options.