Representing Victims Injured in Bicycle Accidents in Woodbury, Minnesota
In today’s modern world, cycling is one of the most productive activities you can do for your personal health. It’s a fantastic way to stay in shape with many documented health benefits, and it can reduce your carbon footprint if you bike more places than you drive. However, the lack of a multi-ton vehicle around you means cyclists are far more at risk of serious injuries if they are involved in a collision on the road. Many car drivers do not respect cyclists, or are unsure of how to handle them. These can result in bicycle accidents that lead to serious injury or death. If you or a loved one has been a bike accident and was injured to the negligence of a driver, contact Sand Law today to see how we can help.
Bicycle Hazards on the Road
Because of the risk of unaware or disrespectful drivers on the road, cyclists must be aware of their surroundings at all times. Motorists often fail to respect cyclists on the road, leading to accidents that could otherwise be easily avoided. Common accidents involving bicycles include:
- Collisions, especially in turning lanes
- Speeding accidents (cyclists can be seriously injured even by cars moving at low speeds)
- Reckless driving incidents, such as if a driver intentionally gets too close to a cyclist on the road
- Failure to yield to a cyclist
- Driving under the influence
- Poor driving conditions such as rain or fog
Bicycle Accident Injuries
Without the protection of windows, air bags, and a steel frame around them, cyclists are vulnerable to far more than car drivers. All the safety precautions in the world like helmets and knee-pads will do little good if a cyclist collides with a car going highway speeds. Serious injuries can occur even at low speeds, if the cyclist is knocked off their bike and lands on asphalt.
Head Injuries from Bike Accident
Helmets are made to absorb force, but even they have their limits. The most common head injuries concerning bikes are skull fractures and concussions. Particularly hard impacts can lead to traumatic brain injuries.
Neck and Shoulder Injuries from Bike Accident
Landing on the upper torso can dislocate the shoulders or damage the essential vertebrae and nerves in the neck, and could potentially lead to neck-down paralysis.
Spine and Back Injuries from Bike Accident
If you fall head over heels off your bike, you stand a good chance of landing back-first on asphalt or pavement and injuring your spine. Impacts like this can crack vertebrae, slip disks, and tear muscles and spinal nerves. At higher forces, these impacts can break the spine outright.
Eye and Ear Injuries from Bike Accident
A heavy landing on something other than pavement can send debris into the eyes, or could rupture the eardrum from the impact force.
Disability, Paralysis, and Loss of Limbs from Bike Accident
Contact with a car going at speed can break limbs in a way that they cannot be set right, sever the spine, or cause head trauma that can lead to reduced cognitive and motor function. Limbs may be damaged to a degree so great by the impact or the landing on the road that they may have to be amputated. Neck-down or waist-down paralysis can also occur with high impacts.
Reckless and Negligent Drivers cause Bicycle Accidents
Most bicycle injuries, even the most minor ones, are the fault of reckless or negligent drivers. A modicum of caution on their part could prevent hundreds of injuries a year. The most common driver behaviors that lead to accidents are things like:
- Changing lanes or turning without checking for oncoming cyclists
- Backing out of a driveway or a parking space without looking
- Not looking before opening a car door, or doing it suddenly in the path of a cyclist and leaving them no time to avoid it
- “Rolling” through stop signs
- Driving distracted
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Your Options after a Woodbury Bicycle Accident
Under the Minnesota No Fault Act, Minnesota is one about a dozen “no-fault” states in America. This means that your own personal injury insurance will pay for medical expenses and out-of-pocket expenses after a car accident, up to the policy limit, regardless of who caused the crash. The no-fault system has its advantages, such as if the injuries incurred in the accident are minor.
However, no-fault claims do not allow you to seek monetary compensation for pain and suffering, as well as other non-monetary damages stemming from the accident. To seek those damages, you can file a third-party lawsuit with an insurance company, which could allow you to seek greater amounts of compensation than a no-fault claim might otherwise get you.
Experienced Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Woodbury, Minnesota
Injuries from bicycle accidents can be devastating to the well-being of an individual and their loved ones. If you or a loved one was injured by a negligent driver while riding a bicycle, please contact us online or by calling our Woodbury office at (651) 291-7263. Our team will make sure that the drivers are held responsible for their actions, and that you receive the compensation you deserve.