San Bernardino Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Advocating for the Rights of Injured Cyclists
Bicycling is a common pastime and form of commuting in Southern California—unfortunately, so are bicycle accidents. Between the years of 2015 and 2019, San Bernardino saw 1,536 bike collisions, coming in ninth out of California’s 58 counties for the number of bicycle accidents. During the same time period, 35 cyclists were killed in the county, placing San Bernardino at seventh place for the number of bicycle-related fatalities in the state.
As an injured bicyclist, you should not hesitate to contact a San Bernardino bicycle accident attorney regarding compensation. Only a skilled representative will be able to recover the full amount of your current and future damages, such as medical expenses and lost wages. Cyclists have very little protection in an accident and can suffer from broken bones, road rash, neck and back injuries, and even severe brain and spinal injuries. Vetchtein Law can provide the representation you need to win fair compensation for these and any other injuries as well as for wrongful death.
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California state law gives bicyclists the same right of way as motorists on the road. Cyclists are not allowed to ride on the sidewalks unless it is too dangerous or difficult to ride in the street, which means that motorists are required to be on the alert for bicyclists and to treat them the same way they would another motorist.
Other state bicycle laws relevant to cyclists and motorists include:
- Bicyclists must travel on the right side of the roadway in the direction of traffic.
- Gas-powered bicycles and high-speed electric bicycles may not be used on bike paths.
- No one may stop on or park a bicycle on a bicycle path.
- Bicyclists and passengers under the age of 18 must wear a helmet when riding on a bicycle.
- Unlike motorists, cyclists are permitted to use a handheld cell phone while riding.
Unfortunately, many motorists are ignorant of these laws and assume that bicyclists must yield to them or fail to notice cyclists in the streets entirely. The resulting accidents can leave a bicyclist with catastrophic injuries that require expensive and ongoing medical care. If interested in learning more, you can find the full text of California bicycle laws under California Vehicle Code 21200 - 21213.
Understanding when and how bicycle accidents occur can help you to better avoid being involved in a collision. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), fatal bicycle crashes strongly tend to occur:
- Between the hours 6 p.m. and 9 p.m., regardless of the time of year
- In urban areas (75%) as opposed to rural areas (25%)
- When alcohol is involved (37% of all fatal bicycle crashes in 2017 were alcohol-related)
Many bicycle accidents that occur involve only the cyclist themselves—usually because they fell off their bike or crashed into a stationary object. However, bicycle accident claims we handle at our firm relate to those crashes involving a cyclist and one or more motorists. These crashes are usually especially injurious or deadly for the cyclist.
Common causes of such bicycle accidents in California include:
- Distracted driving, such as texting while driving
- Speeding or other reckless driving (such as tailgating cyclists or trying to run them off the road)
- Motorists not checking next to or behind them before turning or backing up
- Poorly designed bike lanes and/or improperly maintained roads
- Invasive or improperly marked construction zones
Vetchtein Law has represented clients in all types of personal injury cases, from bike accidents and car accidents to premises liability and wrongful death. Call at your earliest convenience to schedule a free case evaluation with a bicycle accident lawyer. Our attorneys with the firm are prepared to take the insurance companies head-on and will not stop fighting until fair compensation has been won.