As a personal injury law firm with greater than fifty years of combined experience, we can tell you that accidents involving cars hitting bicyclists are all too common. We are often asked about bicycle accident cases and traffic laws regarding vehicles sharing the road with bicyclists. So let us share with you some facts about bicycle accidents in Southern California.
California leads the nation when it comes to bicycle-related fatalities. In fact, in 2020, a new report showed that bike fatalities hit a 25-year high.
Many areas of Southern California are indeed striving to become more bicycle-friendly, but the fact remains that if a car hits you while you are on your bike, there is a high chance you may suffer severe and potentially life-changing injuries.
Where do most bicycle accidents occur?
Most bicycle fatalities occur in urban areas, as opposed to more rural areas. Unfortunately, accidents in urban areas tend to result in more severe injuries. Although studies show that the number of bike accidents are declining nationwide, unfortunately, the number of bike fatalities are increasing. Approximately 1 in 5 bicycle accidents occurs between 6 pm and 9 pm, with most injured victims are male.
What are the most common bicycle accident injuries?
If you are a cyclist who collides with a car or truck, you will take the brunt of the collision and injuries. That is because there is likely nothing other than a helmet to protect you (assuming you are wearing a helmet!). As such, the most common bicycle accident injuries include:
- Brain injury (head trauma)
- Broken bones
- Internal damage to organs (ruptured spleen, etc.)
- Road rash
- Spine injuries
Brain and Head Injuries from Bike Accidents
Not all bike accidents will lead to a traumatic brain injury. Still, brain injuries are the most severe injuries cyclists sustain. Traumatic brain injuries also account for 60% of all fatalities resulting from bike accidents. Other face and head injuries that bicyclists hit by cars may suffer from include:
- Cranial hemorrhage
- Dental fracture
- Facial fracture
- Skull fracture
Symptoms of a Brain Injury after Bike Accident
Injuries such as traumatic brain injury vary widely based on the type of injury, the severity of the damage, and the portion of the brain that was injured. Symptoms that a brain injury has occurred may include the following immediately after a bicycle accident or in the days and weeks following an accident:
- Blurred vision
- Difficulty speaking
- Difficulty concentrating
- Loss of consciousness ranging from few seconds to few minutes
- Memory problems
- Mood or behavioral changes
- Ringing in ears
- Weakness or numbness
You should always seek medical treatment following a bicycle accident. If you develop any of these symptoms in the days following a bicycle accident, contact your doctor immediately.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents in Southern California
The leading cause of bicycle accidents is being hit by a car while cycling. Other common causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Collision with a fixed object
- Distracted riding
- Poor road condition
- Rider inexperience
- Riding too close to a lane of traffic
- Not riding in the bike lane
- Not paying attention
- Colliding with other cyclists, resulting in a bicycle crash.
What to Do if You’ve Been Hurt in Bicycle Accident
If you’ve been struck by a car while riding your bike, get medical care immediately. When you can, or when you have a family member or friend available to help, please contact a bicycle accident lawyer.
If you need to sue for compensation, including your medical care, early preservation of evidence is helpful to your claim. Insurance companies are best dealt with by a reputable attorney known for successfully litigating cases involving car accidents. Your bicycle accident attorney will guide you through the process, help ensure you receive the medical care you need, and alleviate additional stress while you recover.
SoCal Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Kubota & Craig is a top Southern California law firm representing cyclists injured due to being hit while riding a bicycle. If you have been injured, our bike accident lawyers are here to help. For more information, visit https://www.kubotacraig.com/bicycle-accident-attorney-orange-county/, or call 949-218-5676 for a free consultation with our personal injury attorneys.
Kubota & Craig’s injury lawyers are respected, experienced, and peer-referred, due to their unmatched advocacy and litigation skills, as well as their investment in raising the bar of excellence in Southern California’s legal community. Because of the superior verdicts and settlements they have obtained in the past two decades, they are among the most highly regarded personal injury attorneys in Southern California.