When you have been seriously injured, or someone you know has been killed from a bicycle accident in South Carolina, you will need the experienced legal help of a Charleston bicycle accident lawyer to recover your losses and injuries caused by your traumatic accident. These are classified as Tort Law cases (i.e. a civil wrong against another) and warrant the attention of an experienced injury lawyer who will know the law and how to make the best recovery of money damages for you.
Common Causes of Bike Accidents
One of the main common causes of bike accidents almost always involves driver’s who are inattentive to their surroundings. When a driving decides to use their phone while driving, they are giving up complete control of their vehicle. As a result, driver’s may unintentionally swerve into another lane or onto oncoming traffic. In a bike accident case, distracted drivers may drive into a biking lane, placing innocent cyclists in harm’s way.
There are also situations where a driver is travelling over the speed limit and could place both the lives of pedestrians and cyclists in jeopardy. For example, the speed limit of neighborhoods and other types of residential areas is usually 25 miles per hour. If a driver comes flying in at 40 or 50 MPH, they could very well collide with a pedestrian or cyclists travelling alongside the road.
How Could a Victim Prove Negligence?
To establish negligence, the victim must be able to prove that the driver of the vehicle owed a duty to the bicyclist to maintain a proper lookout, to not drive fast for the conditions, and exercise due care. If it is found that the driver of the vehicle owed the victim a duty of care and that duty was breached either by driving too fast, not paying attention to the road, or obeying the rules of the road, they could be found at-fault for the accident. Once it is proven that the defendant caused the accident, the plaintiff must then prove that their damages and injuries were directly caused by the accident and that the defendant is liable to cover their damages since they caused the accident.
What Types of Evidence Should be Preserved Following a Pedestrian Accident?
The type of evidence that should be preserved following an accident includes photographs of the scene of the accident, any interviews from nearby witnesses, and medical records documenting the victims injuries. Although it may be difficult to obtain evidence following an accident, a victim can entrust an attorney to return to the scene of the accident to take any note of traffic signals the driver may have violated. To reconstruct how the accident may have occurred, an attorney may be able to access the services of an expert who can piece the events leading up to the accident in an effort to show how the driver displayed negligence.
Severity of Injuries
South Carolina is not the most friendly environment for bicyclists to ride. In recent years, there has been a substantial increase in the numbers of accidents involving bicyclists. The majority of these accidents involve a cyclist being struck by a car, truck, or some other moving vehicle. Because of the obvious vulnerability that an individual has as a cyclist from being openly exposed to the environment around them, their injuries from these accidents are usually very serious and in many cases even result in death.
Accordingly, an individual’s damages are usually catastrophic and include very expensive medical treatment, wage loss, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment and in many instances, loss of consortium (i.e. loss of services to ones spouse or significant other). A Charleston bicycle accident lawyer will understand the legal issues that an individual, as an injured bicyclist, face.
Fighting the Charge
A Charleston bicycle accident attorney will stand ready to serve their client and their family to make the proper recovery for the damages they have sustained in their accident, and also to defend an individual against the inevitable claims that will likely be made by the defendant and their insurance company that somehow the accident was the fault of their client.
A common defense used by insurance companies and defendants is to blame the cyclist, alleging that they did not follow the rules of the road, were biking in an unsafe manner, or were a “renegade of the road” in their attempt to avoid responsibility and liability in the case.
An individual should not trust the insurance company to treat them fairly and they should never settle for less than their claim is worth. In order to determine the true value of their case, their lawyers, staff, and in many cases, their hired experts through the attorney will help quantify the damages in an individual’s case to make sure an individual recovers every benefit owed to them in their case.
Contact a Charleston Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
A Charleston bicycle accident attorney will be able to help gather all the necessary evidence and aid in retrieving the maximum compensation available in your bicycle accident case.