san bernardino bicycle accident lawyer

Climate change has made the bicycle once again attractive for adults. Easy access to shopping areas and workplaces results in more people biking. Moreover, the savings of not having to pay for gasoline or the upkeep of a car are certainly attractive. However, cyclists are facing unique challenges and dangers as more and more begin to hit the pavement and roadways.

In spite of your best efforts, you may find yourself injured following a cycling accident. Maybe a loved one even lost their life.

Dealing with the aftermath may include head, neck, or back injury, broken bones, road rash, facial injuries, and a broken bike; or even worse. You may be worried about the cost it will take to go to the doctors and pay the co-pays (if you have insurance) or simply the loss of the ability to work and earn a living thanks to your injuries.

Should You Hire a San Bernardino Bicycle Accident Lawyer?

If you are experiencing bicycle crash-related injuries and losses, you need help and guidance through this difficult time.

Our team at MKP Law Group, LLP is experienced in San Bernardino bike law and injury litigation experts. Our vast network of contacts will connect you with the best medical professionals and any other experts you may need to get through this difficult time.

If you have been seriously injured in a bicycle accident, you need a San Bernardino bicycle accident lawyer who can help you get the compensation you deserve.

Our team will work with you to:

  • Help you get the medical treatment you need.
  • Navigate the complicated insurance processes.
  • Investigate the case to prove fault and negligence.
  • Negotiate claims to maximize your compensation.
  • Walk you through the legal procedures.
  • Provide hands-on support and personalized service.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident, don’t go it alone; call MKP Law Group, LLP to set up your consultation today. The consultation is free, and, as always, MKP Law Group, LLP works on a contingency basis, meaning you don’t have to pay anything out-of-pocket.

Statistics on Bicycle Accidents in the County

Traffic safety statistics indicate that, in 2019, there were 16,123 injuries or fatalities related to vehicle collisions. Of these, bicyclists and pedestrians accounted for 5% of all victims.

Although it is true that bike crashes have dropped by 18%, there is a worrisome equity gap score of 6.3. It underscores that black San Bernardino residents are more likely to be victims of bicycle accidents than other demographics.

Insurance specialists are looking at the statistics from a different vantage point. Estimating the population to be 215,252 residents, they average that annual bike fatalities per 100K traffic participants are 578. The share of fatalities involving a bicycle rider wearing a helmet in San Bernardino was only 14%. It puts the city third in the list of the most dangerous localities to bike.

Common Causes of Bike Accidents in and around San Bernardino

What makes the roads so dangerous for those on pedal cycles? Government officials note that vehicle crashes are at the top of the list of fatal bike accidents. Moreover, it is no longer the younger generations that are at the highest risk of sustaining fatal injuries. In fact, deaths among the under-20 demographic went down 90%. Middle-aged and senior riders are now those most likely to be involved in an accident.

Male riders are among the most likely victims of deadly crashes when compared to statistics involving females. Another factor to consider is alcohol consumption among cyclists. It played a role in 21% of deadly accidents. There are also high-risk times to consider. For example, July and August are the most dangerous months for cyclists to be on the road. This coincides with summer vacation and nice weather that persuades many adults to bike to work and leave the car at home.

With respect to the deadliest times, peak hours range from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. During this time window, 21% of cyclist deaths occurred. Since 78% of fatalities happen in urban areas, this time might coincide with the evening rush hour as well as the early happy hours of bars and restaurants that serve alcohol.

Moreover, this explains why 65% of deaths were reported on major roads as opposed to minor streets or side streets. Intersections represent potentially fatal settings, with 35% of deaths happening in accidents involving turning cars or cyclists.

Preventing Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle accidents are not the sorts of things that only happen to other people. For this reason, NHTSA experts have put together safety measures designed to keep you safe on the road.

  • Protective equipment. This refers to a bike helmet, reflective gear at night, bright clothing during the day, and front as well as rear lights and side reflectors.
  • Clothing selection. Avoid problems by wearing pants and shoes with laces tucked inside. This avoids problems with the bike chain that could result in sudden stops or a loss of balance.
  • Route planning. It is always a good idea to select streets that have less traffic or where motorists travel at slower speeds. If you have a choice between a road with a bike lane and one without, it is safest to choose the bike lane.
  • Defensive driving. Never assume that another driver sees you.

What Does Our San Bernardino Bicycle Accident Lawyer Suggest You Do after a Bike Accident?

The very first thing to do is call 911.

Even if you think you are okay and the vehicle driver suggests their insurance will pay for your bike’s damage, call the authorities anyway. For starters, you may have hairlines fractures that will worsen without medical attention. Secondly, a doctor will be able to determine if you are dealing with internal bleeding and other injuries.

Besides that, you also need to file a police report. Failure to do so may result in the other party’s disputing that they were involved in an accident with you. Similarly, if you were harmed by a road hazard, police officers will document the situation in an official report. If you are able to do so, take photos of the accident scene.

Understand the Statute of Limitations for Bicycle Accidents

Working with our San Bernardino bicycle accident attorney protects your rights. For example, did you know that you only have a limited amount of time to file a bicycle accident claim?

When it comes to filing bicycle accident injury claims, what’s important to know is the statute of limitations varies according to who is being sued.

The statute of limitations is a deadline to file a lawsuit. This means lawsuits filed after the statute of limitations will be entirely dismissed and void for being untimely.  Generally speaking, there are two statutes of limitations that apply to California bicycle accident cases:

Private Individuals: 2 years

For filing claims against private drivers, other cyclists, etc., following a bike accident, you have 2 years from the exact date the accident occurred.

Exception for Minors: If the bicycle accident victim is a minor at the time of the incident, a claim can be filed at any point until the minor’s 18th birthday. After the minor turns 18, the standard 2-year statute of limitations applies.

Note: If the individual being sued dies (whether in the bicycle accident or otherwise), a lawsuit must be filed within 1 year of the incident.

Governmental Entities: 6 months

Suing governmental entities like the Department of Transportation (Caltrans) or governmental workers will trigger a statute of limitations of only 6 months.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are bicyclists in California allowed to drive on the roadways and highways?

Many drivers do not realize that California law allows bicyclists to use any road unless it is clearly indicated that it is prohibited. So bicycle riders can use highways and city roads just as any other motor vehicle. They must follow the same traffic rules, but they operate at a much lower speed, and other drivers sharing the road may get frustrated.

Is it illegal to ride a bike on the sidewalk in California?

No, it is not illegal to ride a bike on the sidewalk according to state law. However, according to California Vehicle Code Section 21206, local governments have the right to regulate the laws for the use of bicycles on public sidewalks.

Do you need a license to ride a bicycle in California?

No, there is no legal requirement to license your bicycle. However, certain cities offer programs to register your bike, such as the City of Long Beach.

Can you ride a bike on the freeway in California?

Often the answer is no, but there may be exceptions. According to the California Vehicle Code Section 21960, freeways and other similar designated portions of roadways to which vehicle access is completely or partially controlled may prohibit the use and access by pedestrians, bicycles, or other non-motorized traffic (or motor-driven “cycle” vehicles such as a motorized scooter). This includes the prohibition of motorized bicycles.

So, it is necessary to be on the lookout for any signs indicating that a freeway or expressway prohibits access to bicycles.

Do bikes have to stop at stop signs in California?

Bicycles are considered vehicles and have the right to use highways and city roads, so it is obligatory to follow the vehicle code and adhere to all traffic rules including stopping at stop signs and red lights.

Does Auto Insurance Cover Cyclists in Bicycle Accident Cases?

Yes, most of the time.

Typically it comes down to who was at fault in the accident. If the accident was the fault of a negligent driver, the driver’s auto insurance should cover the damages.

Do Not Wait to Contact a San Bernardino Bicycle Accident Lawyer at MKP Law Group, LLP

If you or a loved one has been hurt in a bicycle accident, contact us today at 310-285-5353 so that we can start fighting to get you the compensation you deserve.

At MKP Law Group, LLP, we have personal injury attorneys highly experienced in handling bicycle injury accidents and have obtained large settlements on behalf of our clients.

We know how to deal with insurance companies so that you do not have to and, instead, can focus on getting better. Our priority is for you to get the best care on every level.

MKP Law Group, LLP’s team strives to make the process as easy and quick as possible for you. The team at MKP Law Group, LLP is experienced, attentive, dependable, and tenacious, so call us today to schedule your 100% consultation. As always, if we don’t win your bicycle accident case, you don’t owe us a dime.

We proudly service area clients in San Bernardino County, Los Angeles County, Riverside County, and Orange County.

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