Bicycling is a fun, affordable, and eco-friendly way to travel or stay fit. However, bicyclists are often seriously injured in the Augusta area. Even a low-speed accident can leave you with broken bones, scrapes, and a concussion.
More severe incidents can be fatal or cause lifelong injuries. If you or someone you care about has been in a bicycle crash, an Augusta bicycle accident lawyer can help you receive fair compensation.
Remember, seeking legal counsel is not only about obtaining financial relief but also about ensuring such accidents are thoroughly investigated, and the responsible parties are held accountable.
Why Are Bicycle Accidents So Serious?
When you ride in a car, you are surrounded by protective features. Seat belts, airbags, reinforcements in the car body, and even a car’s size help guard against the effects of a collision. Unfortunately, bicycles have no protective gear to cushion the crash.
The following are more reasons bicycle accidents are serious:
- Bicycles are smaller and lighter than other vehicles. This means that in a crash, they can easily be pushed around or become airborne.
- Bicycles must balance on two wheels. Even a minor impact can upset a bike’s delicate balance and send the rider to the ground.
- Many cyclists don’t wear helmets, which increases the risk of a head injury.
- Bicycles are vulnerable to tipping over because of potholes, debris, or other hazards on the road.
- Bicycles are harder to see than cars, especially at dusk and after dark. When other motorists can’t see a cyclist, they don’t slow down or maneuver to avoid a crash, hitting the cyclist at full speed.
- Bicyclists can be the victims of overly aggressive drivers who don’t think bicycles belong on the road.
To decrease your chances of injury, follow the traffic laws and safety tips. For example, wearing protective gear can protect your body during an accident, decreasing your risk of injury.
If you were involved in an Augusta bike crash, call our firm, and a personal injury attorney will discuss your options.
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What Kinds of Injuries Are Common in Bicycle Accidents?
In a typical bike accident, cyclists may fall sideways, hitting their shoulder, arm, or head on the pavement. The cyclist may also put a hand out to break the fall. Often, the cyclist skids along the roadway. Some of the common injuries we see from bicycle accidents include:
- Broken wrist, hand, arm, and elbow bones
- A broken clavicle or collarbone
- Brain injuries
- Neck injuries
- Dislocated joints
- Nerve damage and spinal cord injuries
- Scrapes and bruises
If you are in a bicycle accident, see a doctor as soon as possible, especially if you have pain or hit your head.
The shock of the accident can make it almost impossible to tell how badly you have been injured, and the safest course of action is always to seek immediate medical care.
Who Is Liable for My Bicycle Accident?
Liability will depend on how the crash happened. Most of the time, the party liable in a bike accident is the one whose carelessness caused the incident. This is known as “negligence.”
Common types of negligent driver behaviors that cause bike accidents include:
- Passing too closely
- Turning into the path of a rider
- Drunk driving
- Being distracted by a cell phone
- Not seeing a cyclist
While a negligent driver is usually the at-fault party in a bicycle crash, other possible liable parties should be considered.
Depending on the circumstances of the incident, several other parties could be responsible, including the car or bicycle manufacturer, car or bicycle parts manufacturer, or government agencies.
What Damages Can I Recover After a Bicycle Crash in Georgia?
If someone else’s negligence caused your bike accident, you could recover your accident-related losses, including:
- Medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Cost of fixing or replacing your bike
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
We know that money won’t bring back your health. However, we also know that fair compensation can make a difference in the type of medical treatment you receive, your ability to recover, and put your life back together. Our team’s bicycle accident attorney in Augusta, GA, can help.
Does It Matter Whether I Was Wearing a Helmet in Augusta?
Cyclists in Richmond County and the rest of Georgia must follow certain rules. For example, riders under 16 must wear helmets, and all riders must use front and rear lights when riding on the street at night.
Riders are also expected to follow the rules of the road, including riding on the right (with traffic), stopping at stop signs, and signaling when turning. If you weren’t following the law at the time of the crash, you might be considered negligent.
However, this does not necessarily mean you don’t have a claim.
Georgia’s Comparative Fault System
Georgia uses a system of “comparative fault.” If you and another person were negligent, the insurance company or the local courts would assign each of you a percentage of fault. You could still recover damages for your injuries if you were 50% or less at fault.
You have to be careful not to sell yourself short, though. The insurance company will look for any excuse to avoid paying your claim, including finding ways to blame you for the accident unfairly.
For example, an insurance company may claim you are partly to blame for a nighttime crash because you didn’t have a rear light on your bike.
However, if the other driver ran a stop sign and hit you from the front, your rear light had nothing to do with causing the accident, and you should not recover less money because of it. This is why you need to talk to a lawyer about your bicycle claim.
Why You Should Choose John Foy & Associates
Our personal injury law firm was founded with a simple vision: all accident victims deserve the best chance of recovery. For the past 20 years, we have worked to make that vision a reality by putting money in the hands of people who have been injured.
We want to help you with your bicycle accident claim, beginning with a free consultation to discuss how you were injured. So let us give you a free consultation. Call our legal team and get your free case review today.
Talk to a Bicycle Accident Lawyer in Augusta, GA
At John Foy & Associates, we want you to have the money you need to get back on your feet, and we know how to get maximum compensation. Our lawyers work on a contingency-fee basis. Therefore, we will never charge a fee unless we help you obtain compensation.
Let us give you a FREE consultation and explain what we can do. Contact us or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.