Non-motorist participants in a vehicle collision can include both pedestrians and bicyclists. These individuals tend to suffer severe injuries due to their general lack of protection and exposure to numerous types of impact damage. Injuries can include broken bones, torn ligaments, brain trauma and spinal cord damage. Unfortunately, serious collisions can result in fatality.
While crash data for 2020 might be partial or skewed due to the pandemic, the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety published data from 2019 that highlighted the severity of bicyclist-involved collisions. They included statistics such as:
- Bicyclists in the age range of 15-20 have the highest rate of suspected serious crash injuries.
- Among the bicyclists treated at medical facilities following a vehicle collision, riders aged 10 to 14 years old had the highest rate of serious trauma care.
- In each year from 2015 to 2019 there were an average of 24 fatalities in bicycle traffic crashes.
With these sobering statistics in mind, it is crucial that all bicyclists remember five tips regarding their rights for monetary compensation following a devastating encounter with a vehicle:
- Even if there’s no physical contact, and the driver runs you off the road, there still might be a case.
- It is important to collect all the driver’s info after a collision. Even if it is a hit-and-run, try to note the most detailed description of the vehicle you can safely manage.
- When possible, it is crucial that you identify any witnesses and gather their contact information. The driver might claim that the bicyclist was at fault for the collision, so having a list of credible witnesses to the collision is important.
- Seek medical attention even if you feel fine. Adrenaline might mask your ability to feel certain physical injuries. Some damage, including a traumatic brain injury, could remain hidden until hours, days or even weeks later.
- Talk to a lawyer.
It is wise to consider your legal options after any type of motor vehicle collision. If you suffered a serious injury due to a driver’s negligence or inattention, do not hesitate to seek legal guidance.