Bicycle Accident Lawyer in Charlotte, NC
There are various reasons people choose bicycles as their preferred method of transportation. In a city like Charlotte, many residents live close enough to work that they can commute via bike. Not only are bicycles a form of exercise, but they are also environmentally friendly and cost less than maintaining a car. Unfortunately, too many drivers disregard cyclists and share the road irresponsibly. When that occurs, there is a significantly increased risk of an accident. If you have been in a crash with a vehicle, a bicycle accident lawyer from Edwards Injury Law is here to help.
How Common Are Bicycle Accidents in Charlotte?
According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, the high rates of bicycle crashes contribute to the state being ranked as one of the most dangerous states for cyclists. Excessive speeding contributes to nearly one-third of all bicycle crashes. The faster a driver goes, the more likely a collision with a cyclist is fatal.
Mecklenburg County, home to Charlotte, has the second highest number of bicycle-motor vehicle accidents, attributing to nearly 12% of statewide crashes. On average, there are 116 bicycle accidents in Mecklenburg per year.
What Laws Protect Bicyclists in North Carolina?
In an effort to reduce accidents and protect bicyclists, there are a number of state laws in place that bike riders and motorists must follow. The most applicable laws include the following:
- Bicyclists must ride on the ride side of the road;
- It is illegal to operate a bicycle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol;
- To ensure visibility, bikes must be equipped with a rear reflex mirror;
- Bicyclists must signal when intending to turn.
Motorists and bicycles involved in a crash that results in injury, property damage, or death must remain at the scene until law enforcement responds.
In the event a driver or cyclist disobeys the law and causes injury or property damage, they can be held accountable for their actions. If a negligent motorist has injured you, a bicycle accident lawyer from Edwards Injury Law in Charlotte can explain your rights in relation to state laws.
Why Do Bicycle Accidents Happen?
Bicycle accidents are commonly the fault of negligent drivers. While drivers are often looking for other vehicles, they may not take care to look for cyclists. Many bicycle accidents occur at intersections, particularly when cars are turning. The most common bicycle safety issues include:
- A lack of bicycle facilities on all roadways
- A lack of alternatives to biking on main roads
- A lack of bicycle paths and greenways
- Motorists not sharing the road responsibly
Another common type of bicycle accident is known as “dooring” crashes. A dooring collision occurs when a vehicle parks and the driver or a passenger fails to check for oncoming traffic before opening their door. An unsuspecting bicyclist could hit the car door and be thrown over the vehicle.
No matter the situation that caused your bike accident, Edwards Injury Law can investigate the circumstances and help you determine the best path forward to recovery.
What Should I Do After a Bicycle Accident?
If you have been hit by a vehicle while riding a bicycle, you may have sustained severe injuries. If you are unable to speak with the driver or witnesses, that is okay. When the police arrive at the scene, you can explain what happened and that information will go in an official report that your lawyer can reference later.
It is imperative to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may receive emergency medical services and be transported to the hospital. Do not refuse medical care. You may have injuries you cannot see, and you want to protect your health and future.
Once a doctor has seen you, it is time to consider reaching out to a Charlotte bicycle accident lawyer. They will be able to help you understand your legal rights and options, so you can pursue an injury claim to seek compensation for your losses.
How Do I Choose the Best Bicycle Accident Lawyer For Me?
Choosing to pursue a personal injury claim after a bicycle accident can seem intimidating. With the right attorney, you can be on your way to recovery faster than you might think. At Edwards Injury Law, we strive to demystify the claim process, so our clients have a comprehensive understanding of their rights.
You may consider handling your claim on your own; however, there are risks associated with doing so. For example, insurance companies are notorious for putting profits before people. A simple “how are you?” from an adjuster could be an attempt to reduce your settlement offer. When you work with a lawyer, you can rest assured that nothing will jeopardize your chance and recovery, and your case will be handled with the utmost care.
Contact Edwards Injury Law
At Edwards Injury Law, our bicycle accident lawyers provide each and every client with customized legal guidance. As a veteran- and black-owned law firm, we understand many of the challenges our clients face financially, socially, and mentally. When you seek guidance from us, we will work with you to build a strong case on your behalf that proves you are owed compensation and the right to recover after an accident that never should have happened. If you are ready to file your claim or have questions about the process, contact us today to schedule a case evaluation.