Bike Accident Lawyer Scranton
Bicycle accidents often result in life-threatening injuries to the bicyclist. Concussions, traumatic brain injuries, fractures, and internal bleeding are some of the most common injuries after a bicycle crash. In many cases, human error is to blame for harmful bike accidents – distracted or impatient drivers, failure to obey roadway rules, or preventable roadway hazards. After a bicycle accident resulting in catastrophic injury or expensive property damage, seek help from the Wilkes-Barre attorneys at Rosenbaum & Associates.
Bicycle Laws in Pennsylvania
All states – and even some municipalities – have their own bicycle laws. In Pennsylvania, the law considers bicycles “motor vehicles,” with all the rights and responsibilities of normal vehicles. Bicyclists can ride on all major roadways, but must ride as close to the right-hand side of the lane as possible. Bicyclists can also ride on sidewalks, as long as they give pedestrians the right of way, unless they are in a business district. In business districts, bicyclists must use the roadway or designated bicycle lanes. Motorists must treat bicycles like other motor vehicles, yielding the right-of-way when appropriate and leaving enough front, rear, and passing room to accommodate the bicyclist safely.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
There are two main causes responsible for the majority of bicycle accidents – driver negligence and roadway hazards. Distracted and careless drivers may fail to notice a bicycle in the roadway or crossing an intersection, leading to a collision. In other cases, roadway hazards such as potholes, malfunctioning traffic lights, or concealed stop signs may contribute to bicycle accidents. Learn who the potential defendants in each type of case are:
- Car accident cases – Bicycle-vehicle collisions bring up the question of fault. Was a negligent driver to blame for the crash, the bicyclist, or a third party? At the scene of the accident, never admit fault. Wait for police to arrive and write up an official report of what happened. You may learn that the other driver is also partially to blame, or a third party contributed to your accident. In Pennsylvania, your own contributory negligence does not bar your from recovery, as long as the other party’s causal negligence was greater than your own. Speak to an attorney to determine fault after a crash.
- Roadway hazard incidents – Many bicycle accidents involve only one party – the bicyclist. Yet even in one-man crashes, there may be another party guilty of causal negligence. If you suffered a broken bone, head/brain injury, traumatic tattooing (severe road rash), or expensive property damage in a one-man crash involving a road hazard, it may be worthwhile to pursue compensation. The city or another party may be liable for your injury if it failed to repair a known hazard such as a pothole, uneven shoulder, fallen tree, defective light, or obstructed road sign.
A competent team of lawyers can investigate your case and help you determine the defendant(s) using eyewitness accounts, information about the driver’s actions or behaviors at the time of the accident, and witness testimony. A lawyer can take over communications with insurance companies on your behalf, helping you negotiate a fair and appropriate settlement amount without having to go to court. The right team, however, can also help you defend your rights in the Pennsylvania civil courts if necessary.
Seek Help from Experienced Scranton Injury Attorneys
Regardless of what you believe caused your bicycle accident, seek advice from a local attorney. Speaking to a lawyer in a free consultation can open your eyes to your rights and potential outlets for recovery. You don’t have to face the repercussions of a major accident alone. Personal injury attorneys are available to represent your case at Rosenbaum & Associates. Contact us for a free, no obligation case evaluation.