The Colorado Springs bicycle accident attorneys of the Green Law Firm, P.C. are dedicated to helping injured riders seek the fair compensation they need to get their lives back to normal.
During the past several decades, bicycling has experienced a surge in popularity. Colorado residents choose bicycling for recreation, exercise, and a daily commuting alternative.
Unfortunately, this escalation in popularity also creates an increase in accidents and injuries. In fact, some statistics report that a cyclist is killed every six hours in the United States. And approximately 1 million children are hurt in bike-related accidents every year. One-third of these accidents involved automobiles, and 75 percent caused serious and traumatic brain injuries. If you’ve been injured contact the Colorado Springs bicycle accident attorneys at the Green Law Firm, P.C. right away.
At Green Law Firm P.C., our dedicated team of Colorado Springs bicycle accident attorneys understands the unique challenges and complexities that bicyclists face when they’re involved in an accident. We know that a collision with a motor vehicle can have severe, life-altering consequences, leading to substantial medical expenses, loss of earnings, and significant pain and suffering. As passionate advocates for bicycle safety and the rights of injured cyclists, we strive to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation you’re entitled to under the law. With our comprehensive knowledge, experience, and aggressive representation, we’re committed to standing up for you against insurance companies and negligent parties, helping you navigate the path to recovery. Contact us today for your free consultation.
Bicycle Accident Injuries
Bicyclists are far more susceptible to serious injuries than car drivers. After all, bicycles offer no protection from injuries. Even when bicyclists wear helmets, they can still sustain serious injuries, including road burns, brain injuries, broken bones, spinal cord injuries, and internal organ damage.
Bicycle accidents can lead to a variety of injuries, many of which can be severe due to the lack of physical protection a bicycle provides. Some of the most common bicycle accident injuries we see at Green Law Firm P.C. include:
- Head and Brain Injuries: These can range from minor concussions to serious traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Helmets can help protect against such injuries, but they don’t eliminate the risk entirely.
- Spinal Cord Injuries: Injuries to the spine can lead to significant pain, limited mobility, and even paralysis. This can include fractures, disc injuries, or more severe damage to the spinal cord itself.
- Bone Fractures: Cyclists are prone to fractures in a collision, particularly in the arms, legs, collarbone, and wrists, due to the instinct to break a fall with their hands or because of direct impact during an accident.
- Soft Tissue Injuries: This can include damage to muscles, tendons, and ligaments, leading to sprains or strains. Road rash, a severe form of skin abrasion, is also common in cycling accidents if a rider slides across pavement.
- Facial and Dental Injuries: These can range from minor cuts and bruises to severe fractures, broken teeth, and serious eye injuries.
Internal Injuries: A heavy impact can cause internal bleeding or damage to organs, which can be life-threatening.
Common Causes of Colorado Springs Bicycle Accidents
Intersections continue to be a dangerous area for bicyclists. According to recent statistics, 35 percent of all fatal bicycle accidents occurred when the cyclist was trying to cross a roadway. Drivers may not see the cyclist or they may have simply ignored the right-of-way laws.
Another dangerous scenario for cyclists is the so-called “multiple threat”. This happens when one vehicle stops for a pedestrian on a multi-lane road, but the motorist in the next lane does not.
Distracted drivers account for a large portion of bicycle accidents. When a driver is talking or texting on a phone, he or she is less likely to recognize a bicyclist in their lane. They may veer off the road into a biker or rear-end a bicyclist at an intersection. Even though more states are enacting anti-texting laws, the majority of drivers still engage in risky distracted driving behaviors
Here are a list of some of the common causes of Colorado Springs bicycle accidents we see at Green Law Firm P.C.:
- Distracted Driving: This includes activities like texting, eating, using a GPS, or any other action that takes a driver’s attention off the road.
- Dooring Accidents: This happens when a parked car’s door is suddenly opened into a cyclist’s path, giving them no time to avoid a collision.
- Failure to Yield: Many bicycle accidents occur at intersections where drivers fail to yield the right-of-way to cyclists.
- Drunk or Impaired Driving: Alcohol or drug use can severely impair a driver’s ability to react and make safe driving decisions.
- Speeding: Drivers who exceed speed limits are more likely to lose control of their vehicles and have less time to react to cyclists on the road.
- Failure to Respect Bike Lanes: Some drivers fail to respect designated bike lanes, encroaching on these spaces and putting cyclists at risk.
- Unsafe Lane Changes or Turns: Drivers who do not signal or check blind spots before changing lanes or turning can easily collide with cyclists.
Colorado Springs Bicyclist Laws
In Colorado Springs, as in the rest of Colorado, bicyclists are considered vehicles under the law. This means cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle drivers. Here are a few key laws that apply to bicyclists:
- Traffic Laws: Bicyclists must obey all traffic signs and signals, just like motor vehicle drivers.
- Riding on the Right: Cyclists are required to ride as far to the right as deemed safe by the cyclist, except when passing another vehicle, preparing for a left turn, or avoiding hazards.
- Riding Two Abreast: Bicyclists are allowed to ride two abreast (side by side), but they cannot impede the normal flow of traffic.
- Use of Bike Lanes: When a bike lane is present, cyclists should use the bike lane, except when making turns, passing another bicyclist, or avoiding an obstacle.
- Helmet Laws: There is no statewide law requiring helmet use for cyclists in Colorado. However, some local jurisdictions may have their own helmet requirements, especially for minors.
- Safety Equipment: Bicycles must be equipped with a white front light visible from at least 500 feet away and a red rear reflector visible from at least 600 feet when directly in front of lower beam headlights on a motor vehicle.
- Bicycles are Vehicles: Under Colorado law, bicycles are considered vehicles, which means cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities on the road as motor vehicle drivers.
- Signaling: Just like motor vehicle drivers, bicyclists must signal their turns. This is usually done using hand signals.
- Lighting: Bicycles ridden between sunset and sunrise must have a white front light that can be seen for 500 feet and a red rear reflector visible for 600 feet when in low-beam headlights.
- Overtaking and Passing: A motor vehicle may overtake and pass a bicyclist if the driver can do so safely without causing danger or inconvenience to the cyclist.
Bicycle Safety Tips
Cyclists can help avoid accidents by following these important safety tips:
- Maximize your visibility by wearing light colored or reflective clothing. In addition, your bicycle should be outfitted with reflectors and lights.
- Always wear a properly fitted bicycle helmet when riding. Wearing a helmet will drastically decrease the severity of any head injury.
- Stay attentive when approaching an intersection
- Adjust your lane position to the left as you approach an intersection. This will make you more visible to drivers.
- Never ride against traffic. Not only is it illegal for bicycles to do this, it is also very dangerous and accounts for a large portion of bicycle accidents.
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, it is important to contact an experienced personal injury law firm immediately. Your rights to compensation can be compromised if you delay. At the Green Law Firm, P.C. our attorneys have extensive experience representing victims of bicycle accidents. We can help you obtain the compensation you need—and can ensure that your rights are always protected.
Recoverable Damages in Colorado Springs Bicycle Accidents
Damages refer to what you can recover from a Colorado Springs bicycle accident. Damages can be divided into economic damages, which have a clear monetary value, and non-economic damages, which are more subjective. Here’s a brief overview:
- Medical Expenses: This includes the cost of immediate treatment following the accident, as well as future medical expenses related to your injuries, such as physical therapy, surgeries, and medication.
- Lost Wages: If your injuries force you to miss work, you may be able to recover the wages you’ve lost. If your injuries impact your ability to earn a living in the future, you may also be entitled to compensation for loss of future earning capacity.
- Property Damage: This covers the cost to repair or replace your bicycle and any other property damaged in the accident.
- Pain and Suffering: These are non-economic damages meant to compensate you for the physical pain and emotional distress you’ve experienced as a result of the accident.
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life: If your injuries prevent you from enjoying activities and hobbies you once enjoyed, you may be compensated for this loss.
- Permanent Disability or Disfigurement: If the accident results in permanent disability or disfigurement, additional compensation may be awarded.
- Wrongful Death: If a loved one was killed in a bicycle accident, surviving family members may be able to recover damages for funeral and burial expenses, loss of companionship, loss of future earnings, and more.
In some cases, if the actions of the at-fault party were particularly egregious, punitive damages may be awarded as a way to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar behavior in the future.
Statute of Limitations for Colorado Springs Bicycle Accidents
The statute of limitations, or legal deadline to file a lawsuit, for bicycle accident cases in Colorado is generally three (3) years from the date of the accident. This means that if you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident, you typically have three (3) years to file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible party or parties.
However, there are exceptions to this rule. If the injury wasn’t discovered right away, the clock may start running from the date the injury was discovered or should have been discovered with reasonable diligence.
Contact Our Colorado Springs Personal Injury Law Firm Today
At Green Law Firm P.C., our seasoned Colorado Springs bicycle accident lawyers are ready to stand by your side and fight for your rights. We understand the physical, emotional, and financial impact a bicycle accident can have on your life. That’s why we’re committed to providing you with comprehensive, compassionate, and effective legal representation to ensure you receive the maximum compensation you’re entitled to. Don’t face this challenging time alone – we’re here to guide you every step of the way. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and find out how we can help you on your journey to recovery. Your future starts now, and we’re ready to help you rebuild and reclaim it. If you have been injured in an accident while riding a bicycle, contact the experienced Colorado Springs car accident lawyers of the Green Law Firm, P.C. today to schedule a no-obligation consultation and discuss your case. Call us now at 719-694-8515.