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Florida: Most Lethal State for Bicyclists?
In Tampa and all of Florida the bicycle is legally defined as a vehicle. Bicyclists have the same rights to the roadways, and must obey the same traffic laws as the operators of other vehicles.
It is then up to bicyclists and motorists to treat each other with care and respect. Strict adherence to the law is the foundation for this respect. However, a report released in 2015 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that Florida has the highest rate of bicycling deaths of any state in the USA.
Wide and fast roadways, lack of safety education, reckless drivers, under-equipped bicyclists, yearlong riding weather, and lagging infrastructure and laws. Many reasons explain why the Sunshine State is one of the most dangerous places for bicyclists.
Bicycle accidents can be some of the most catastrophic injuries that one can endure. When the human body makes direct contact with a speeding automobile the result is often death or catastrophic injury to the bicyclist involved. In addition to serious medical problems, you may be left on the hook for costs and future lost wages. You may be able to seek damages from the one who injured you to cover these costs.
Speak to a Ligori Law attorney about your bicycle accident, today. When you call or use the form on our website, you can schedule a completely free consultation to discuss your case.
The Danger of Bicycle Accidents
A bicycle accident can be catastrophic, especially when it involves organ, brain or spine damage. These injuries often cause lifelong disabilities, and can include partial or total paralysis. If you were fortunate enough to escape these types of injuries, it still may have resulted in broken bones, road rash, and injuries to the knee, neck, back or shoulder, as well as other injuries.
If you who have been involved in an accident your life has already changed. Your family is most probably affected as well. Such an accident may result in permanent injuries that mean not only lifelong care and medical charges, but also the additional cost of a lifetime of lost wages. Hospital stays can be an incredible expense. After those have been covered, the family may face millions in lost wages as a result of death.
For those not suffering a catastrophic injury from a bicycle accident but still dealing with a resulting injury, the amount of past and future medical bills could easily surpass $100,000. This can create a great financial strain for the injured person involved in the accident and their family.
A Bicycle Accident Lawyer Can Help
Past and future medical bills, lost wages and the suffering associated with these types of accidents can be extreme. To learn more about how a Ligori Law bicycle accident lawyer can help you after a bicycle collision, or to discuss your bicycle accident claim with an experienced Tampa personal injury lawyer, call us now at 877-4444-2929 for a free legal consultation.
Please remember, if you have been involved in one of these accidents, you should arrange a medical evaluation as soon as possible. Conditions such as brain injuries may mean a diminishing ability to recall the facts of your accident, and may not be evident without a proper examination. Your lawyer can best help you if you seek medical assistance immediately.
Learn More About Tampa Bicycle Law.
What to Do After a Cycling Accident
The truth is we are never very well prepared for an accident. Who ever thinks of these things in advance?
What often happens is the offending driver or rider will apologize and emotions run high (anger or remorse). Neither of you wanted this to happen and when no one is seriously injured, chances are you want to get out of there as soon as possible.
Most of the time, contact details will be exchanged and you will deal with the damage costs and whatever else later on.
Unfortunately, what also happens is the driver or rider at fault modifying their story afterwards. Usually because they had time to cool down, rationalize and reflect on the accident or they have had a chat with friends or even a lawyer. All of a sudden, they are not so apologetic and will not take any responsibility for damages or injuries you suffered.
Here are a few things to keep in mind if involved in a bicycle accident:
- Get off the road and deal with the incident away from moving traffic.
- If you suspect any serious injury, call an ambulance. You should always consult a doctor as soon as possible after the accident even if you think it was minor. Usually, the adrenaline is pumping and will hide any pain or discomfort for a while. Not worth taking any chances.
- Look for witnesses to confirm the incident details. Gather the witnesses’ contact details as well. These may save you a lot of trouble if the driver’s or rider’s story changes.
- Get the other party’s contact details and driver’s license number. Have the person at fault phone you on the spot so you are 100% sure you have the real number in your phone records.
- Take photos of anything significant with the accident scene that may be of use later (injuries, damages, road “context”, road signs, hour, for example). We all have camera phones these days so this is a viable option if applicable.
- Contact your personal injury lawyer before you speak to any insurance adjuster, even if it is your own insurance company. We know this too well: insurance company are often placing priority on profit rather than people and might not be looking out for YOUR best interests. This advice also applies to interaction with the insurance provider of the party at fault.