Bicycle Accident Attorneys in Biloxi
As far as hobbies go, there is plenty to like about biking. It’s a prolific aerobic exercise and a fun way to get around town during pleasant weather. Riding a bicycle is also considered beneficial for the planet – it does not burn any gas, just calories. But as always, there is a catch – personal safety.
Two-wheelers like bicycles and motorcycles offer zero body protection in the event of an accident or collision. Cars have airbags, seatbelts, crumple zones, a metal envelope, and other safety features that offer a modicum of protection from injury on the road. On a bicycle, you get nothing.
Wearing a helmet may give you some protection against fatal head injuries. Bicycle accidents can cause severe long-term injuries and even death – each year, over 800 bicyclists die on US roads. Living with bicycle injuries can be incredibly painful, with severe financial consequences due to potential disabilities.
Unfortunately, you need to fight for your compensation claims aggressively as a bicycle accident victim. The onus is on you to build a solid case and prove that you are not at fault. Gardner Law Firm has decades of handling such cases for bicycle accident victims. Our personal injury lawyers can help you take the fight to lowballing insurance firms and secure reasonable compensation for all your bicycle accident injuries and losses in Biloxi, MS.
Negligent drivers are a potential threat to bicyclists in Biloxi, MS
Riding a bicycle is not inherently dangerous, as long as you have a reasonable amount of experience in the saddle. Riding on outdoor bike trails with a helmet and pads is relatively safe. The real danger to cyclists comes from other vehicles on the road.
In any collision between a two-wheeler and a car/truck, the odds are stacked heavily in favor of the occupants of the car. This is why many European countries like the Netherlands have dedicated bike lanes/paths that keep bicycle riders away from traffic.
Unfortunately, the United States is not a bike-friendly nation. Our roads are designed primarily for cars and other large vehicles. Even if you follow all the traffic rules and ride your bicycle safely and responsibly, an irate or negligent driver is all it takes to cause a serious accident.
Ignorance or lack of awareness is also a major reason – most drivers don’t know their local traffic laws on bicycles.
Biloxi, Mississippi has specific bicycle safety laws
Under the state laws, bicycles on the road are considered to be vehicles – other drivers must respect the rights of cyclists on Biloxi, MS roads. This involves maintaining a safe distance of at least three feet (3ft) when passing a bicycle.
Apart from the clearance requirement, there are specific rules about safe turning. Turning right into a highway/freeway or at an intersection while passing a bicyclist headed in the same direction is prohibited (unless it can be executed safely). The law also expressly prohibits drivers from harassing, intimidating, and taunting bike riders, or throwing any objects in their direction.
On their part, bicycle riders in Biloxi have to follow all state traffic laws, including the ones related to DUI. Reflectors and white light/lamp with 500+ feet visibility are mandatory on bicycles used at night. Riders have to make appropriate road signals before turning or coming to a stop. Bicyclists can ride more than two abreast on bike paths – but not on regular roads with other vehicles.
Many bicycle accidents in Biloxi, MS are ‘failure to yield’ crashes
When a bicycle is designated as a ‘vehicle’ by law, it grants the riders the same right-of-way as other cars and trucks on the roads. But in reality, most drivers don’t follow this principle. They do not respect the rights of cyclists and generally consider them as a nuisance.
This attitude and sense of entitlement of drivers are the root cause of many bicycle accidents in Biloxi. A ‘failure to yield’ accident occurs when a driver fails to accord adequate space and right of-of-way to bicycles on the road. A driver can do this in several ways, both consciously and otherwise:
- By speeding
- Driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs
- Being distracted on the phone and so on
- Not using turn signals
- Failing to check for blind spots during turns, changing lanes, and the list continues
- By not keeping a general lookout for bikes
As you can see, there are many ways in which an errant driver can trigger a dangerous bicycle accident while driving. Unfortunately, they can also pose a threat to cyclists when they are not driving the car.
Dooring is another leading cause of bicycle accidents in Biloxi
A rapidly opening vehicle door can catch a bicycle rider by surprise, giving them precious little time to react. When drivers or passengers cause a crash by opening a car door directly into the path of a cyclist, it is called “dooring.”
A dooring collision can cause injury in two ways – first through the direct impact, and at times by throwing the rider forward into oncoming traffic, with disastrous consequences.
Unfortunately, dooring is quite common, accounting for nearly one-fifth of all bicycle accidents.
The responsibility for checking the road for oncoming traffic rests entirely on the occupants of a vehicle. Anyone performing an unsafe exit from a vehicle is liable for any damages/injuries to others by such actions.
Consult a Biloxi, MS bicycle accident lawyer for a successful injury claim
Any bicycle accident involving another vehicle has the potential to turn into an intricate liability battle. Insurance companies often try to place the blame for the bicycle accident on the rider to avoid a costly payout. Our reliable Biloxi, MS bicycle crash attorneys at Gardner Law Firm can turn the odds in your favor in the following ways:
Accurately estimate the eligible compensation amount
Investigate the crash, get witness statements
Collect evidence to prove the liability of the driver
The size of the final settlement will depend on factors such as the severity of the injury, the duration of forced absence from work, presence of any long-term disability, pain and suffering, the extent of liability of the driver, and the involvement of multiple guilty parties.
If you or a loved one is a victim of a bicycle accident caused by a negligent driver, know that you deserve fair compensation. The legal burden is not easy to bear, especially in the immediate traumatic aftermath of an accident.
Our bicycle injury lawyers can help you deal with everything – securing medical care, negotiating an adequate settlement with insurance companies, and building a solid case to win it in a court of law if necessary. For a free consultation and review of your case, call Gardner Law Firm at 228-436-6555, or contact us online here.
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