Bicycle Accident Lawyers in Pennsylvania
Having a trusted bicycle accident lawyer in Pennsylvania is crucial after an accident. The experienced personal injury lawyers at Kitay Law Offices are ready to fight for your rights after a bicycle accident. Interestingly, these accidents can come in many forms, which may include:
- At-fault driver ran a stop sign
- Driver ran a red light
- Hit when driver came out of an alley without looking
- Side-swiped when driver failed to stay in lane
- Cell phone use distracted the driver
While helmets and pads can help, bicycles are no match for a car in an accident. In Pennsylvania, drivers are supposed to follow laws that help ensure your safety when riding a bike. Unfortunately, you are completely vulnerable to a car that weighs thousands of pounds. Understandably, even low-speed bicycle accidents can cause serious and severe injuries. In these situations, it is important to have an experienced bicycle accident attorney in Pennsylvania on your side.
What should I do after a bicycle accident?
If you are involved in a bicycle accident, follow these steps:
- Call the police and complete an accident report. Remember, you may have lots of adrenaline running through your veins after a bicycle accident. Therefore, you may not realize you have an injury right away. Making sure the police come and create a report will help you recover money for your damages from an insurance company if you need to later on.
- Don’t yell, scream, or insult the at-fault driver. Yes, it is difficult to keep your emotions in check after a bicycle accident. However, you do not want to say anything that will hurt your case at a later date.
- Refrain from negotiating any settlements with the at-fault driver at the scene of the accident. A hand-shake agreement may sound like a good idea at the time. Unfortunately, it is hard to make someone pay if that is all you have. Instead, you will want an experienced bicycle accident lawyer in Pennsylvania to help you negotiate
- Take photos and video of the accident scene, your bicycle, the car that hit you, and your injuries.
- Speak with nearby witnesses and get their contact information.
Sure, that sounds like a lot of work to do after a bicycle accident. However, following these steps will help an experienced bicycle accident lawyer get you the best settlement possible for your case. The attorneys at Kitay Law Offices are ready to evaluate your case. So, contact us online or call us at 888-KITAYLAW for a free consultation.
What types of vehicles are involved in bicycle accidents?
A wide variety of vehicles can cause bicycle accidents. A few examples include:
- Private passenger cars, like sedans, SUVs, pickup trucks, and vans
- Cars being used for ride-share services, like Uber or Lyft
In each of these situations, a bicycle accident attorney in Pennsylvania can fight for your rights. An experienced attorney is the best person to help hold a careless driver responsible for your accident and injuries. Remember, the at-fault driver will have an entire insurance company and defense attorney representing their interests. Therefore, make sure you are on a level playing field by hiring an experienced bicycle accident lawyer.
How often do bicycle accidents happen?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) most recent statistics show that 857 bicyclists died in traffic accidents in 2018. In addition, 37% of all bicycle crashes in 2017 involved alcohol. Finally, Pennsylvania accounted for 1,137 bicycle accident deaths in 2017. An experienced bicycle accident attorney in Pennsylvania will fight for your rights. This is true both for you and for your family.
What are the Pennsylvania Helmet Laws for Bicycles?
The Pennsylvania Helmet Law includes many rules for riding your bicycle. These laws are most restrictive if you are 12 years of age or younger. Importantly, if you fall into this age group, you are required to wear a helmet whether you are operating a bicycle, or riding as a passenger. Notably, this includes where children under 12 ride in an attached trailer or restraining seat.
Why should I wear a helmet while riding my bicycle?
The Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute recommends that everybody wears a helmet while riding a bicycle. Alarmingly, they estimate that annual bicycle accident deaths have increased from 665 in 2002 up to 857 as of 2018.
In addition to the injuries you may suffer in a bicycle accident, you will incur several costs. If everybody riding a bicycle in the United States buys a helmet and uses it for 5 years, the annual cost is about $261 million. At first, this sounds like a really big number.
However, the annual cost of injuries suffered without a helmet increases to $5.8 billion. This is huge! Therefore, buy a helmet and wear it each time you ride. This way, you have a much greater chance of recovery if you are the victim of a bicycle accident. If you are a victim, call the experienced bicycle accident lawyers in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices for a free consultation. You can contact us online or by calling 888-KITAYLAW.
What types of bicycle safety gear should I use?
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation provides a comprehensive list of recommended safety gear for your bicycle. Among other things, this list includes:
- Buy a bicycle that matches your needs. There are many different types of bicycles, such as road bikes and mountain bikes.
- Ensure your bicycle fits your body. A good bike shop can measure to make sure everything is right for you. You can find a bike shop near you easily on Google.
- Wear a properly fitting helmet. Remember, a proper helmet should meet the recommended standards. In addition, use this guide to confirm that your helmet fits properly.
The bicycle accident attorneys at Kitay Law Offices recommend that you follow the above guidelines. Unfortunately, all too often our clients suffer injuries in bicycle accidents that could have been less severe if they used the proper safety gear. Get medical treatment immediately after a bicycle accident. Then, contact Kitay Law Offices for a free consultation.
Is my community safe for a bicycle?
Every neighborhood is different. Some communities are safe for riders while others can be very dangerous. Before riding, determine whether you are at a high risk for bicycle accidents in your area. The NHTSA has developed a checklist you can use. Some of the factors this checklist measures include:
- The types of road surfaces available
- Whether there is a bike path available where cars are not allowed to drive
- Number of intersections you will have to ride through
- How drivers in your area tend to act on the roads
Unfortunately, you may suffer injuries in a bicycle accident even after taking these precautions. If you do, you can always call the experienced bicycle accident lawyers at Kitay Law Offices. We’ll provide a free consultation and explain how we can help.
How can a lawyer help with my bicycle accident in Pennsylvania?
The experienced bicycle accident attorneys in Pennsylvania at Kitay Law Offices can help obtain maximum compensation for your accident and injuries. Interestingly, we have previously written about personal injury cases. You can read our article about how to identify if you have a personal injury case. Contact us online for a free consultation or call us at 888-KITAYLAW.
Do bicycle accident cases go to trial?
Overall, most personal injury cases resolve before going to trial. This is also true for bicycle accident cases. In most instances, an experienced bicycle accident lawyer in Pennsylvania will be able to help you obtain compensation for your injuries prior to entering the court system. In addition, you can check out our personal injury timeline. This includes a very detailed explanation of what to expect regarding your bicycle accident case if the case settles prior to litigation. You can also download a copy of our diagram for a quick reference.
If your bicycle accident case is unable to resolve prior to litigation, your attorney will put your case into the court system. This is the first step in the process of getting your case to a trial. Importantly, there are many steps in this process. They will occur over the course of several months. Sometimes, it can take years for a trial to occur. For a more detailed explanation, you can check out our personal injury litigation timeline. In addition, you can download our diagram to use at a glance.
Who pays the medical bills after a bicycle accident in Pennsylvania?
This is a very complex question. Primarily, the Pennsylvania Motor Vehicle Financial Responsibility Law (MVFRL) says who is responsible for medical bills in a bicycle accident in Pennsylvania. This applies if you were struck by a car. An experienced bicycle accident attorney in Pennsylvania can further explain the law to you. As a starting point, the MVFRL provides a list in the following order:
- While this sounds strange since you were on your bike, your own car insurance policy is the first priority for payment. This also applies when you are on someone else’s car insurance policy.
- If you do not have your own car insurance policy, but you happen to live with a relative who has a car insurance policy, this is the second priority for payment.
- When you are a passenger in a vehicle that has car insurance, and neither of the above options apply, the car insurance policy covering the vehicle in which you are a passenger pays.
What if none of these options apply to me?
If none of the other three options apply and you are not a passenger in a motor vehicle at the time of the accident, you get to choose any car insurance policy that was involved in the accident to use for payment. However, you cannot choose to use a car that was parked and did not have any passengers inside at the time of the accident. Importantly, an exception to this would be if the car was parked in a way that was so dangerous that it caused your accident and injuries.
This is important because every car insurance policy sold in Pennsylvania must include at least $5,000.00 in coverage to pay for medical bills related to an accident. Bicycle accidents are included so long as a car was involved in the accident, as well. Coverage for medical bills included in car insurance policies is called “first party benefits.” If you have suffered an accident, call the experienced bicycle accident attorneys in Pennsylvania of Kitay Law Offices at 888-KITAYLAW. We will provide you with a free consultation and explain your rights.