Though reported accidents between bicycles and motor vehicles in Wisconsin are relatively uncommon, over 800 bicyclists are injured each year. Bicyclists are at a clear disadvantage in a motor vehicle collision, as their vehicles do little to provide protection, and their injuries are often severe and sometimes fatal. Bicycle accidents are especially common at intersections, and it is important to be aware of how these accidents occur and what you can do if you are injured.
Causes of Wisconsin Bicycle Accidents at Intersections
According to the Federal Highway Administration, over half of accidents between bicycles and vehicles happen during crossing-path events, including when both parties are approaching an intersection. For example, when a car and bicycle are traveling toward an intersection in the same direction, the car may make a right turn into the bicycle’s path. Another common occurrence is a car turning left at an intersection into the path of a bike approaching from the opposite direction that has the right of way. When an accident occurs under either of these circumstances, it is often because the driver of the car failed to see the bicyclist, possibly due to alcohol impairment or a distraction such as texting while driving.
In Wisconsin, bicycles are considered vehicles, and bicyclists must obey all traffic laws. This means, among other things, that they should travel on the same side of the road and in the same direction as cars, and that they should stop when required at intersections with stop signs or traffic lights. Some bike accidents occur in part because a bicyclist is not following these rules, but intersections can be dangerous even for bicyclists who respect the law and take all reasonable safety precautions.
Pursuing Compensation for Bike Accident Injuries
As a bicyclist injured in an accident, you have the same rights as other motorists to pursue compensation if another driver was at fault. You also have a right to pursue compensation even if you were partly at fault for the accident, as long as the fault of the driver is equal to or greater than yours. You should start by seeking medical attention and hiring an attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer can help you build a case for recovery by collecting timely evidence that demonstrates the driver’s negligence. This evidence may include security camera footage, photographs of the accident, police reports, and testimony from witnesses to the crash. If you were struck by a driver who left the scene or a driver who had no insurance or insufficient insurance, you may be able to pursue compensation through the uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage of your own auto insurance company.
Contact an Appleton Bicycle Accident Attorney
At [[title]], we take a thorough approach to every case, ensuring that we do everything in our power to build an airtight argument for your compensation. We know that bicycle accidents are often serious, and we are committed to helping you recover the compensation you deserve. Contact an experienced Green Bay personal injury lawyer today for a free consultation by calling our office at 920-739-7366.