Charleston Bicycle Accident Lawyer
Helping Injured Cyclists in South Carolina
When a bicycle is involved in a collision with a motor vehicle, the cyclist is almost always the one who suffers the most severe injuries. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that bicyclists are 29 times more likely to die in a traffic accident than the occupants of passenger vehicles.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a bicycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages. At CR Legal Team, our Charleston bicycle accident attorney can help you understand your rights and maximize your entitled damages.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
Knowing what to do after a bicycle accident can help you protect your health and your right to recover compensation. Here are some steps to take:
- Call 911: If you are able, call 911 and report the accident. The dispatcher will send an ambulance to the scene if anyone is injured.
- Get medical attention: Even if you do not think you were seriously injured, it is important to see a doctor as soon as possible after a bicycle accident. Some injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), may not be immediately apparent. Additionally, seeing a doctor will create a record of your injuries, which can be useful if you decide to file a personal injury claim.
- Collect information: If you are able, collect the names, phone numbers, and insurance information of the driver and any witnesses. You should also take pictures of the accident scene, your injuries, and any damage to your bicycle.
- Do not admit fault: Even if you think you may have been partially to blame for the accident, do not admit fault to the driver, the police, or the insurance company. There may be factors that you are not aware of that contributed to the accident.
- Report the accident to your insurance company: You should report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. However, you should not give a recorded statement or sign any documents without first speaking to an attorney.
- Call a bicycle accident lawyer: An experienced bicycle accident attorney can help you understand your rights and guide you through the claims process. They can also handle all communication with the insurance company on your behalf.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
Most bicycle accidents are caused by the negligence of a motorist. Some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Driver inattention: When drivers are not paying attention to the road, they may not see a bicyclist until it is too late to avoid a collision.
- Failure to yield: Drivers are required to yield the right-of-way to bicyclists when they are turning left or right. When a driver fails to yield, they may collide with a bicyclist.
- Dooring: Dooring occurs when a driver or passenger opens their door into the path of a bicyclist. This can cause the bicyclist to be thrown from their bike and into the path of oncoming traffic.
- Speeding: When a driver is speeding, they may not have enough time to stop or slow down to avoid a collision with a bicyclist.
- Drunk driving: Alcohol impairs a driver’s ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. When a driver is drunk, they may not see a bicyclist or may not be able to stop in time to avoid a collision.
- Distracted driving: When a driver is texting, talking on the phone, eating, or engaging in any other activity that takes their attention away from the road, they may not see a bicyclist until it is too late to avoid a collision.
Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
When a bicycle is involved in a collision with a motor vehicle, the cyclist is often thrown from their bike and onto the pavement or into the path of oncoming traffic. This can result in severe injuries, including:
- Broken bones: When a bicyclist is thrown from their bike, they may try to break their fall by putting their hands out in front of them. This can cause them to suffer a broken wrist, arm, or collarbone. Additionally, if a bicyclist is struck by a car, they may be thrown into the air and land on the pavement, which can cause them to suffer broken bones.
- Head injuries: When a bicyclist is involved in a collision with a motor vehicle, they may be thrown from their bike and land on their head. This can cause them to suffer a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which can result in long-term cognitive impairments and other complications. Wearing a helmet can help reduce the risk of a head injury in a bicycle accident.
- Spinal cord injuries: When a bicyclist is thrown from their bike and lands on their back, they may suffer a spinal cord injury. This can result in temporary or permanent paralysis.
- Internal organ damage: When a bicyclist is involved in a collision with a motor vehicle, they may be thrown into the air and land on the pavement. This can cause them to suffer internal organ damage, which can be life-threatening.
- Road rash: When a bicyclist is thrown from their bike and lands on the pavement, they may suffer road rash. Road rash occurs when the skin is scraped against the pavement, which can cause severe abrasions and lacerations. Road rash can also lead to a serious infection if it is not properly treated.
How Long Do I Have to File a Bicycle Accident Lawsuit in South Carolina?
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. In South Carolina, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is three years from the date of the accident. If you do not file a lawsuit within this time frame, you will be barred from recovering compensation for your injuries. Additionally, the longer you wait to file a claim, the more difficult it may be to gather the evidence needed to prove liability.
How Our Charleston Bicycle Accident Attorney Can Help
At CR Legal Team, our Charleston bicycle accident lawyer can help you understand your rights and fight for the maximum compensation you are owed. We will conduct a thorough investigation into the accident to determine who was at fault and gather the evidence needed to prove liability.
Our team will also handle all communication with the insurance company on your behalf and negotiate with the insurance company to obtain a fair settlement. If the insurance company is not willing to make a fair settlement offer, we will not hesitate to take your case to trial.