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Bicycles can be found alongside cars almost everywhere you go. Bike lanes tend to run alongside normal traffic lanes, and if there is no bike lane, cars must share the road with bike riders. Unfortunately, sharing the road can be dangerous when drivers do not pay attention to bike riders.
Bicycle accidents are commonly caused by inattentive drivers striking bike riders. Bikes are much smaller than cars, and drivers might fail to see them or will not bother to look for them. To hold a driver liable, you may have to prove they acted negligently when they caused the accident. An attorney can help you in all aspects of your case, from filing an insurance claim to filing a lawsuit.
If you were hit by a car while riding your bicycle, our Westchester, NY bicycle accident lawyers can help you get compensation for your damages. Call The Martello Law Firm, PLLC at (914) 685-6950 for a free case evaluation.
How Bicycle Accidents Happen in Westchester, NY
A bicycle might be the only option for some people if they do not have a car and public transportation is unavailable. Bikes often ride alongside cars, and accidents may happen in many ways. Our Westchester, NY bicycle accident attorneys can help you if you were hurt in a crash while on your bike.
Many bicycle accidents happen when someone is changing lanes in traffic. When a driver changes lanes, they are supposed to use their blinker to signal other drivers. Unfortunately, if the driver forgets to signal, a nearby bike rider might not realize the driver is changing lanes and could get hit. Alternatively, bike riders are also supposed to signal a lane change, usually with a hand signal. If drivers ignore this signal, they could hit the bike rider.
A similar predicament occurs when drivers fail to use signals when making a turn. If a driver turns without using their blinker, a bike rider behind them might not brake in time to avoid the car as it turns down another road. Even though the bike rider is the one hitting the car, the driver is likely at fault for not signaling.
Sometimes, there is no bike lane for bicycles, and riders must ride in normal traffic lanes with cars. Cars are required to share the road, but they do not always do so. When drivers fail to be observant of bikes, they can hit bike riders and injure them.
Intersections are common places for accidents to happen with bicycles. A bike rider crossing an intersection could be T-boned by a car and gravely injured. A driver’s failure to abide by stoplights or stop signs puts bike riders at great risk.
Damages Related to Bicycle Accidents in Westchester, NY
After a bicycle accident, you probably have serious injuries that need medical attention. Medical treatment is not cheap, and you may end up with high medical bills you cannot afford. You might also have numerous other expenses related to the accident. You can claim these losses as damages in a lawsuit, and our Westchester, NY bicycle accident lawyers can help you get compensation.
Economic damages are those that are tied to definite values and prices. Bills, invoices, and clear financial losses are all considered economic damages. Economic damages often include medical bills, the value of any lost wages from missed work, and the cost to repair or replace property like your damaged bike.
Non-economic damages are sometimes called intangible damages because they are not visible like economic damages and do not come with a predetermined price. Some of the most common non-economic damages are your pain and suffering. Evaluating and calculating these damages requires analyzing how they have impacted your daily life.
Holding a Driver Liable for Your Westchester, NY Bicycle Accident
Most accidents are based on negligence. Proving negligence in a court of law requires proving four crucial elements. If even one of these elements is missing, negligence cannot be shown, and the defendant cannot be held liable. These elements are duty, breach, causation, and damages.
Duty refers to the defendant’s legal duty of care they owe the plaintiff. On the road, drivers have a duty to drive in a reasonably safe and prudent manner under the circumstances. Different circumstances, like driving in the rain or fog, may require different driving styles to be reasonably safe.
The breach is the defendant’s violation of their duty. You must show that the defendant did something that was not reasonably safe under the circumstances. For example, speeding on wet roads might not be reasonably safe. And if that speeding caused an accident with a bike rider, the driver may be liable.
Causation is the connection between the breach and the accident. You must demonstrate that the defendant’s actions were the direct and proximate cause of the accident, not some other independent source.
Finally, you must prove your injuries and losses. Your damages must be real, meaning they cannot be hypothetical or potential. Any damages not fully realized cannot be claimed.
How an Attorney Can Help My Bicycle Accident Case in Westchester, NY
Our Westchester, NY bicycle accident attorneys can help you at all stages of your case. When filing a lawsuit, you must make sure that you are filing with the right court that has jurisdiction over your case. Filing with the wrong court will only cost you time and set your case back. Our attorneys are familiar with this area of law and the courts in Westchester and can help you begin your lawsuit.
Once your case is filed, our team can help you gather evidence and talk to possible witnesses about your accident. Knowing what evidence to look for is often very challenging, and a skilled lawyer can help you streamline the process.
If a court case is not the best option for your case, our attorneys can help you negotiate a settlement agreement with the defendant. In a settlement agreement, the defendant will agree to pay for some of your damages in exchange for you dropping the case. The terms of this agreement would have to be negotiated and hammered out, and our team can help you advocate for what you need.
Call Our Westchester, NY Bicycle Accident Lawyers for Help
If you were injured in a bike crash with a car, truck, or other motor vehicle, call our Westchester, NY bicycle accident lawyers for help. Call our team at The Martello Law Firm, PLLC at (914) 685-6950 for a free case review.