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Riding a bike in San Diego’s perfect weather can be a joy for many. But in our busy metropolitan traffic, bicyclists inevitably face the risk of ending up in vehicle accidents. At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we have extensive experience helping victims of severe auto-related accidents pursue the compensation they deserve.
If a vehicle injured you while riding a bike in San Diego, contact the San Diego bicycle accident lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys today to learn more about your options for legal recourse.
Over the past ten years, Gomez Trial Attorneys has recovered more than $500 million in damages for our clients. Our clients have suffered injuries in a variety of accidents, including auto accidents and bicycle accidents. Some recent awards include:
At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we fight hard for all of our clients, including victims of bicycle accidents. You do not have to have an attorney to file a bicycle accident claim. However, our resources can offer important advantages, should you decide to pursue a claim. Our attorneys can help you:
The California Vehicle Code provides clear guidelines for bicyclists’ conduct when taking to the roads. Bicyclists, along with motorists, are expected to strictly adhere to these laws. Familiarize yourself with the applicable provisions BEFORE heading out. The California Bicycle Coalition is a reader-friendly option for perusing California bicycle laws and other pertinent information to make your outdoor adventure a safe one. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is a great resource for understanding your responsibilities as a cyclist on the road. Watch their informative ‘Rules of the Road’ video here.
San Diego’s bicycle enthusiasts face dangers throughout the city, including areas with high volume traffic and traffic moving at a high rate of speed. Because the city planners designed San Diego’s roadways with primarily motor vehicle traffic in mind, many areas in the region do not have a designated bike lane or enough space for bicyclists to travel safely. Throughout San Diego County, only the city of Escondido features a bicycle path that spans the entire city from east to west.
Around 950 bicycle accidents occur in San Diego County each year, with about half occurring in the city.
A study tracking bicycle accidents over a six-year time frame found some of the city’s hotspots for bicycle accidents include:
The most dangerous crash zones in San Diego for bicyclists include the city’s downtown core and the Gaslamp, University Avenue in North Park, Pacific Beach, and the Little Italy/Cortez Hill area.
Bicycle accidents can occur because of road defects, slippery road conditions in rain, or even defective parts on the bicycle. However, some of the most injurious bicycle accidents in San Diego result from the negligence of motor vehicle drivers.
Some common accidents that occur between bicycles and motor vehicles include:
You can enjoy bicycling in San Diego if you follow the proper precautions. Here are some tips to help keep the experience as safe as possible.
On a bicycle, you have no protection from the vehicle that strikes you in an accident. When accidents occur at high rates of speed, you may fly off of your bicycle. Your body may strike pavement, a light pole, a street sign, or a building with little or no protection. As a result, bicycle accidents often cause serious injuries that can lead to high medical expenses. By working with an attorney, you can better calculate the cost of your medical expenses following an accident.
Following a bicycle accident, many victims find that their medical expenses grow higher than they anticipated. You can include all of your medical expenses in your personal injury claim. Even if you are not fully recovered, you can work with your attorney to estimate your overall and future medical costs. Predictions will be based on the extent of your injuries and your projected recovery. The final amount of your medical bills will likely depend on the extent of your injuries. Some common injuries from bicycle accidents include:
Traumatic brain injury. Wearing a helmet can significantly decrease the potential for traumatic brain injury (TBI) if you are involved in a bicycle accident. However, even the best helmet cannot eliminate the risk. Over their lifetimes, victims of traumatic brain injuries can expect to pay a significant amount of money on medical expenses. The costs of medical care will vary.
Some symptoms of TBI include:
In some cases, victims of severe traumatic brain injury may need round the clock care.
Spinal cord damage. The cost of spinal cord damage varies significantly depending on the extent of the injury. In just the first year following a spinal cord injury, victims could face:
For victims of spinal cord injury, the need for medical care will also continue throughout the rest of their lives. Incomplete spinal cord injuries do not completely sever the spinal cord, and victims maintain some mobility despite the damage.
Victims with incomplete spinal cord injuries may heal, recovering increased mobility overtime. However, victims with complete spinal cord damage may not ever regain mobility below the site of the injury. Spinal cord damage may cause a loss of bladder and bowel control and limited sexual functioning.
In addition to the cost of hospitalization, surgeries, and therapy, victims with spinal cord damage may face other costs related to their injuries. The following costs may all be included in your bicycle accident personal injury claim.
Amputation. Having to amputate a foot or leg can be devastating. In addition, it can cost anywhere between $30,000 and $60,000 for the initial hospital stay. Many people choose to use a prosthesis to improve mobility or independence after the accident. As a bicycle rider, you may want a specialized, heavy-duty prosthesis. A specialized prosthetic will allow you to enjoy your favorite form of exercise as soon as possible after the accident. During a lifetime, the cost of prosthetic devices can mount substantially. A basic prosthesis often costs around $5,000, while a more expensive model may cost as much as $50,000.
Amputation victims often need to replace these prosthetic devices within the first year after amputation. Generally, prosthetic devices must be replaced every three to five years. They may need more frequent replacement after heavy use, especially use by athletes.
Broken bones. Following a bicycle accident, you may have multiple broken bones. If you do not require surgical intervention to fix those bones, your medical treatment may cost a few thousand dollars. However, surgical treatment for a broken bone may cost as much as $35,000. Multiple broken bones may substantially increase the amount you must pay to treat your injuries.
Road rash. Many bikers take pride in minor road rash from the slips and spills they have over the years. Road rash on the face or neck, however, can cause significant disfigurement that makes many people highly uncomfortable. Road rash around the joints, on the other hand, can significantly decrease mobility, making it hard to perform common activities. Many accident victims choose scar revision to help decrease the appearance of scars and restore normal appearance after road rash. The cost to minimize those scars will vary based on the extent of the injury.
In addition to the common medical costs experienced after an accident, many accident victims must also consider other factors. Talk with an attorney to determine more about how unexpected medical costs could contribute to your personal injury claim. Unexpected medical costs may include:
When you suffer serious injuries in a bicycle accident, it may prevent you from going back to work. If you work in a labor-intensive job, for example, you may struggle with injuries that impact mobility or strength. If you work in a highly creative profession, traumatic brain injury can prevent you from performing your normal job responsibilities. If you lose wages as a result of a bicycle accident, you are entitled to compensation for those losses.
In addition to lost wages, you may also be entitled to compensation for lost earning potential in the future. You may claim lost earning potential if your injuries prevent you from returning to your former profession after an accident. Lost earning potential claims can help you return to school or acquire better certifications. You may then be able to pursue employment in another field.
In addition to monetary costs, you may face other losses due to your bicycle accident including, physical pain, mental suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. These damages are often called “pain and suffering.” Being injured in a bicycle accident may prevent you from doing activities that brought you pleasure, including social activities with friends and family members. Depending on the facts of your case, you may be able to recover pain and suffering in your claim.
To claim your injuries after a bicycle accident, you must determine what factors contributed to your accident. Often injured parties choose to file a personal injury claim against the driver who caused your accident. However, there may be more than one party who is responsible for your accident. For example:
To determine liability after a bicycle accident, you may need to work with an experienced attorney who can look at your case, review the circumstances that led to your accident, and hire expert witnesses to support your case.
San Diego is a great place to ride a bicycle, whether you choose to take in the sights on the Bayshore Bikeway, get a workout on your road bike climbing to the Palomar Observatory, or commute to and from work by cutting through Balboa Park.
Cycling in San Diego comes with risks, however. Accidents happen, and when they do, they can be catastrophic for riders because a bicycle is no match for a vehicle of any size in a collision.
The experienced bicycle accident injury lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys help injured San Diego cyclists and the families of those who tragically perish in local bicycle accidents get the compensation they deserve. That way they can pay for their medical expenses, lost wages, pain, and suffering.
Contact Gomez Trial Attorneys online or by phone for a free case evaluation after a bicycle accident in San Diego injures you or a loved one. Below, our team answers some frequently asked questions about San Diego bicycle accidents.
San Diego cyclists can suffer injuries in many types of traffic accidents.
We represent clients in virtually any of them, including:
These are examples only. No matter how you or a loved one suffered injuries in a bicycle accident, the Gomez Trial Attorneys team invites you to contact us for a free consultation. You may have the right to substantial financial compensation.
Our experienced team of award-winning trial attorneys has helped numerous clients recover compensation for a broad array of serious and catastrophic injuries. Over our years of practice, we have developed extensive knowledge about the causes, effects, and costs of those injuries, which we put to work to ensure that our clients receive as much money as possible to help them heal and rebuild after a San Diego bicycle accident.
Here are some of the common injuries for which we can help injured cyclists secure compensation:
As above, these are merely examples of the types of injuries for which the Gomez Trial Attorneys team can help injured San Diego cyclists obtain compensation. Talk to us today about how a bicycle crash in San Diego harmed you or a loved one to learn about how we may help.
Chances are good that you can, but it takes talking to a skilled San Diego bicycle accident injury attorney to know for sure.
In general, under California law, you have the right to take legal action seeking compensation from anyone whose unreasonably dangerous conduct caused your bicycle accident, as well as against anyone who has a legal obligation to answer for that conduct.
To put it more simply, if your San Diego bicycle accident shouldn’t have happened and it wasn’t entirely your fault, then you probably have the right to seek compensation for it. A skilled bicycle accident injury lawyer can help.
You may, for example, have the ability to sue:
Again, these are just a few examples. The most reliable way to find out if you can sue for your San Diego bicycle accident, and if so, who you might have the right to sue, is to speak with a skilled bicycle accident lawyer as soon as you can after your accident.
It depends on the specific facts of your case. In general, however, victims of bicycle accidents in and around San Diego can usually seek to obtain two kinds of damages for their injuries and losses: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages, also known as special damages, consist of financial costs and losses you incur because of a bicycle accident, such as:
Non-economic damages, also called general damages, compensate you for the non-financial harm you suffered in and after a San Diego bicycle accident, such as:
In a limited number of cases, San Diego bicycle accident victims may also seek punitive damages against the at fault party. These damages punish particularly extreme or outrageous conduct.
We will never guarantee results in cases we handle. That’s just not how the legal system works. We can, however, tell you that our team has a hard-earned and well-deserved reputation for obtaining top dollar settlements, judgments, and jury verdicts for our injured clients.
In general, the amount of money our team may secure on behalf of an injured San Diego bicyclist usually depends on:
The Gomez Trial Attorneys team works hard to identify and pursue every dollar of compensation our clients deserve for injuries and losses they suffer in bicycle accidents.
Yes, you can.
First and foremost, get the medical care you need and follow your doctor’s treatment plan. At Gomez Trial Attorneys, we want our clients as healthy as possible. We also want our clients to have complete and comprehensive medical records that we can use to prove the nature and extent of their injuries. Finally, we want our clients to avoid giving ammunition to defense lawyers and insurance companies who always look for opportunities to argue that injured accident victims should have done more to take care of themselves.
Next, save everything in your possession connected to your San Diego bicycle accident until a lawyer has a chance to review it. In particular, do not throw away your damaged bicycle or helmet, and do not get them fixed either. They may constitute valuable evidence in proving your claim for damages. Also, save all paperwork, including insurance statements, medical records, and police reports.
Finally, avoid any interaction with the at fault party’s insurance company. You have no obligation to talk to an insurance adjuster who calls to ask you questions about what happened. If you receive a settlement offer directly from that insurance company, do not agree to it and do not sign anything until you have consulted with an experienced San Diego bicycle accident attorney about your rights.
As soon as you can.
Bicycle accidents sometimes cause catastrophic injuries. Even if you are still in the hospital after a San Diego bicycle accident, do not hesitate to contact us right away. We offer a free consultation to discuss your legal options, and we can come to meet you in the hospital if need be.
We encourage you to contact us immediately because you have a limited time to take legal action for compensation. By contacting a lawyer immediately you can ensure you do not miss important deadlines that could impair your rights. You also enhance the lawyer’s ability to collect important evidence on your behalf, before that evidence goes missing.
The Gomez Trial Attorneys team of San Diego bicycle accident injury lawyers wants to see you receive the maximum compensation available. Contact us now for your free case evaluation.
A study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission revealed that bicyclists accounted for 2 percent of all traffic deaths and 2 percent of all crash-related injuries in one recent year. Results revealed that cyclist deaths occurred primarily between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., with the occurrence increasing to 71 percent in urban areas. Another study reported the number of cyclist deaths increased to 18 percent in one recent year. This is consistent with the Governors Highway Safety Association’s reports of increasing cyclist fatality incidents.
While you cannot control other cyclists and motorists on the road, you can control how well you personally prepare for your ride and take steps to decrease the risk of a crash. Simple measures such as ensuring that your bike is the right size for you, your bike is functioning properly, and wearing reflective, protective gear. The NHTSA offers a helpful tutorial on how to fit your helmet. Finally, never stop learning. Visit local classes to brush up on how to navigate traffic and communicate with others on the road.
If you need an attorney after a bicycle accident claim, do not delay. Contact Gomez Trial Attorneys at (619) 237-3490 as soon as possible after your accident. We can help you seek the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
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