Stockton Bicycle Accident Attorneys
If you were involved in a bike accident and someone else was at fault, you should contact the Stockton personal injury attorneys of OnderLaw, LLC immediately. We could represent you in your case and help you hold the negligent driver liable. You might be entitled to compensation for your medical bills, personal property damage, and other losses. You should not be forced to pay for any of these expenses if another person were entirely responsible for the crash.
At OnderLaw, LLC, our Stockton bicycle accident attorneys will fight hard to get the justice you deserve. Your injury might require ongoing physical therapy, prescription medications, and other forms of treatment. If you can’t afford your bills, you could face crushing debt. The financial strain of a bike accident can be overwhelming. You can depend on our team to aggressively pursue the maximum compensation you need from the at-fault party.
Learn more about our legal services and your available options for holding another person accountable after a bicycle accident by calling OnderLaw, LLC at (314) 963-9000 for a free consultation.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer? Why Choose OnderLaw, LLC?
The Stockton bicycle accident attorneys of OnderLaw, LLC dedicate their time and effort to help individuals suffering from another person’s wrongdoing. We know how serious the injuries can be and the painful journey you have in front of you. You face an uphill battle recovering from the crash and trying to seek compensation from the at-fault driver. Handling both at the same time can be exhausting and stressful.
We can take over your case completely. While you’re attending your doctor’s appointments, we can investigate the accident, gather evidence, and negotiate a settlement with the insurance company. If they deny your claim or refuse to settle for a fair amount, we have the resources to file a lawsuit and battle it out in court. We always try to develop the most effective strategy to get the results you want.
OnderLaw, LLC has worked with various accident victims since 2002. We come highly recommended to many of our clients because of our proven track record of success. Martindale-Hubbell gave us an AV® rating, the highest possible rating any lawyer in their field can receive. We also received recognition for our achievements by Super Lawyers, the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, The National Trial Lawyers, and other prestigious organizations.
Bike Laws in Stockton
Although riding a bicycle is fun and excellent exercise, you face inherent risks whenever you take your bike out on the road. Some streets don’t have bike lanes, and those that do may run directly next to roadways for motor vehicle drivers. State laws are in place to protect you from harm and inform you of your rights and responsibilities on the road.
The California bike laws you must follow are:
Locations You Can Ride
- When possible, use the bicycle lane if you’re traveling slower than traffic. The only exceptions are when you’re passing, avoiding hazardous conditions, approaching an area to make an authorized right-hand turn, or turning left.
- You can ride in a regular lane as long as you’re traveling as fast as the other vehicles.
- “Take the lane” if you’re biking slower than traffic, but there isn’t a designated bicycle lane. That means you can share the lane with vehicles but ride as close to the side of the road as possible.
- Bicyclists can ride outside of the separated bikeway. A separated bikeway is a bicycle lane that is separated from traffic with car parking, posts, or something else. A separated bikeway is exclusively for the use of bicyclists.
- You must always ride on the right side of the street in the same direction as traffic unless you’re riding on a narrow road, passing, or turning left, or encounter a construction zone that closed the right side of the road.
- Stopping or parking your bicycle on a bike bath is prohibited.
- According to Stockton Municipal Code, you’re not allowed to ride or attempt to ride on a sidewalk or on a walking area inside a private shopping center or parking area unless a posted sign permits it.
- You can never ride a bike on an expressway or freeway.
- Bicyclists can’t cross toll bridges unless the California Department of Transportation permits it.
Operating a Bicycle
Riders and passengers under 18 years old must wear approved helmets.
- Bicyclists are not allowed to operate a bike while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- You can’t wear a headset that covers both ears or earplugs in both ears while operating a bike.
- Bikers can use a handheld cell phone.
- You must yield the right of way to pedestrians at intersections in unmarked and marked crosswalks.
- Bicyclists are prohibited from parking their bikes in a way that obstructs pedestrians or from leaving bikes on their side on a sidewalk.
- The bike must be small enough for the rider to start safely, stop, and support it with one foot on the ground.
- Bicyclists must be able to perform a one-braked-wheel skid on clean, level, and dry pavement using the brake on their bikes.
- Handlebars should not be higher than the biker’s shoulders.
- Bicycles must be equipped with reflectors if the cyclist rides at night. The bike or the rider must also have an attached white headlight.
- Bicycles must have a regular and permanent seat unless the manufacturer designed the bike without a seat.
Causes of Bike Accidents
Bicycle accidents occur despite various laws to keep riders safe and prevent injuries and fatalities. Many motor vehicle drivers don’t pay attention to bikers and ignore areas where they’re supposed to yield the right of way. Others might not notice a nearby bicyclist because bikes are much smaller than cars and trucks and harder to see in blind spots.
Bicycle accidents are often the result of driver error. The most common causes include:
- Dooring – A dooring accident occurs when someone parks their car and opens their door into the path of an approaching bicyclist.
- Turning into a bike lane – Since bicycle lanes run alongside traffic, drivers must enter them to turn right. They could sideswipe a biker if they don’t look before turning.
- Failure to yield – At places like intersections, people must yield to others when necessary. A motorist blowing through a red light could crash into a bicyclist already passing through.
- Unsafe lane changes – Changing lanes requires that drivers use a turn signal, check blind spots, and slowly maneuver their vehicle into the adjacent lane. Inadequate preparation can lead to a collision with a bicyclist already in the lane.
- Drifting into bicycle lane – Driver distractions take a person’s attention from the road to another task. If someone isn’t focusing on what they’re doing, they could begin to drift into the bike lane and crash directly into a bicyclist.
- Running a stop sign or red light – Bicyclists must follow the same traffic laws as the drivers of motor vehicles. That means that both bicyclists and drivers should stop when necessary and can proceed only at green lights. If a driver ignores signs and signals, they could end up in a biker’s path and cause a crash.
- Making a right or left turn without signaling – The law requires a turn signal when preparing to turn left or right. If a bicyclist doesn’t know someone’s about to turn, they can’t slow down or stop in time to avoid a crash.
If you were involved in a bike accident due to any of these reasons or some other factor, do not hesitate to contact OnderLaw, LLC to discuss your case.
Common Injuries Suffered in Bike Accidents
Severe and debilitating injuries are common for bicyclists who suffer collisions with motor vehicles. Bikers don’t have the same safety features as the occupants of cars and trucks. There isn’t a seatbelt to keep them on the bike or an airbag to soften the blow of an impact. Unfortunately, the helmet is the only thing protecting them, but even that doesn’t prevent some head injuries.
The most common injuries bicycle accidents cause include:
- Broken bones
- Road rash
- Psychological trauma
- Traumatic brain injury
- Internal damage
- Soft tissue injuries
- Loss of limb
- Spinal cord and back injuries
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement
Many injuries lead to disability. Bicyclists experience the full force of a crash and can suffer injuries from the initial impact, flying debris, or falling onto the ground. Bike accidents can disrupt a person’s whole life and lead to ongoing pain, complications, and doctor bills. The negligent driver should not go unpunished for what they have done.
Compensation for Bike Accident Injuries
Since California is a fault state, the individual responsible for an accident becomes liable for the victim’s injury and losses. Even though you were on your bike when the crash occurred, you could file a car insurance claim for compensation.
Every vehicle driver must carry liability insurance. The available coverage will depend on the limits on the policy. State law requires minimum limits of $15,000 for bodily injury and $5,000 for property damage, but the policyholder can purchase higher coverage.
When you file a liability claim, you could pursue compensation for your losses, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Medical bills
- Physical impairment or disfigurement
- Property damage
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Emotional distress
If you file a lawsuit, you could also seek exemplary damages. You must have clear and convincing evidence to prove that the defendant acted with fraud, malice, or oppression to convince a jury to award this.
Stockton and California Bike Accident Statistics
According to statistics, biker fatalities reached an all-time high between 2016 and 2018. Traffic accidents during these three years caused 455 bicyclist deaths. This was the highest number of deaths than any other three-year timeframe in 25 years.
The fatality rate from 2016 to 2018 in California was around 3.9 bicyclist deaths per one million people. That’s higher than the national rate of 2.6 per one million people. Men died at a higher rate than women. Additionally, people between the ages of 45 and 64 years old were killed in bicycle accidents more than any other age group.
Los Angeles County had the most deaths during these three years. San Joaquin County ranked number five with 26 biker fatalities.
Speak to a Dedicated Stockton Bicycle Accident Attorney
The Stockton bicycle accident attorneys of OnderLaw, LLC are ready to put our skills and experience to work for you. We are available 24/7 to take your call and discuss your case. You will be our priority from start to finish of the process. We believe in providing accident victims with support and guidance during their time of need.
If you suffered injuries in a bicycle accident due to another person’s negligent actions, call OnderLaw, LLC for your free consultation at (314) 963-9000.