Even if cyclists take all necessary precautions, they are at risk for being
injured in a bicycle accident.
Bicycle accidents often involve both the cyclist and a car or truck, and accidents involving
another vehicle are especially dangerous. Most bicycle accidents, however,
are avoidable and are often caused by a driver’s negligence.
Most bicycle accidents that result in serious injury involve a car or other
motor vehicle. These accidents are often caused by a driver’s negligence, such as:
- Not checking blind spots before switching lanes;
- Opening a car door into a bike lane;
- Backing out of driveways or parking spots without checking the rearview mirror;
- Driving while intoxicated;
- Failing to yield the right-of-way;
- Failing to stop at stop signs or red lights;
- Passing a cyclist too closely and sideswiping him or her; or
- Abruptly merging into the bike lane.
To avoid liability in an accident, both drivers and cyclists must comply
with Maryland law in operating vehicles safely.
Other bicycle accidents are caused by defective bicycles or parts. If a
manufacturer puts out a bicycle with an unsafe design, or if a bicycle
or part is manufactured defectively, the manufacturer may be liable for
any resultant injuries.
Sometimes, a municipal or state agency may be liable for accidents caused
by poorly designed intersections, bike lanes, or shoulders, or by the
failure to maintain roads and trails.
rate of injury in bicycle accidents in Maryland is over double the rate of injury in
crashes overall. Over 80% of bicycle crashes result in injury.
The seriousness of the injury depends on several factors, including:
- Whether any automobiles were involved;
- The speed of the cyclist and any other parties involved;
Whether the cyclist was
wearing a helmet or other protective gear; and
- Road or trail conditions.
Because bicycles lack the protective devices of automobiles and because
cyclists are left exposed in a collision, injuries sustained in bicycle
accidents are often severe, especially when a car is involved. Common
- Cuts, lacerations, and road rash;
- Broken bones;
- Dislocated joints;
- Head and neck injuries;
- Traumatic brain injury;
- Spinal cord damage and paralysis; and
Maryland state law governing
bicycle use has several protections for cyclists, including:
- Drivers of motor vehicles must maintain a safe passing distance, no closer
than three feet, when passing a bicycle;
- When driver makes a turn or crosses a bike lane, the bicyclist has the
right-of-way and the motorist must yield;
- Cyclists generally must ride as close to the right-hand edge of the road
as is safe and practicable;
- Cyclists must use bike lanes when provided; and
- Helmets are required for cyclists under age 16 riding their bikes on roads
or other public property.
If a driver or cyclist violates one of these laws and a crash results,
the violation may serve as
evidence of negligence.
Charles County, MD Personal Injury Lawyers that Fight for You
Bicycle accident injuries can be serious, but an experienced attorney can
help you recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and
pain and suffering. Please call the dedicated personal injury attorneys at the
Law Office of Robert R. Castro at (301) 804-2312 for a free initial consultation.