Leesburg Bicycle Accident Attorney
Bicycling is not only great exercise, but it is also a great way to relax and take in the scenery, which is why so many people in Virginia choose to take up biking as a recreational activity. Unfortunately, biking – like all other activities involving the roadways of Virginia – can be a dangerous activity. From blind curves to lack of proper protective equipment, bicyclists are often the victims of severe or even fatal accidents. In 2014, there were 712 bicycle injuries on Virginia roadways, and 12 fatalities. A majority of the bicycling accidents were a result of the motor vehicle operators’ errors, and were not the fault of the bicyclists.
If you or a loved one was severely injured or even killed in a bicycling accident, and if another driver’s negligence is to blame, you deserve to be compensated for your damages and losses. At Simms Showers, LLP, our Leesburg personal injury attorneys are able to work with victims of bicycling accidents throughout the entire claims process—from filing their claim to building their case, and from negotiations to agreeing upon a settlement.
Factors Leading to Bicycle Accidents in Virginia
Virginia is a favored bicycling haven for cyclists across the country, and each year, thousands of individuals flock to our state’s beautiful countryside to tour the trails and routes created specifically for cyclists, including the popular Washington and Old Dominion Trail that runs from Purcellville, Virginia to Washington D.C. and goes right past our offices. The combination of Virginia’s rural landscape and the feeling of freedom that bicycling creates allows riders to get away from it all, if even just for the weekend.
Unfortunately, even with all the trails and biking routes, bicycling accidents still occur. One of the reasons for this is that drivers are unaware of rules governing bicycles on Virginia roads. For instance, in Virginia bicycles are allowed to:
- Ride on the roads like any other vehicle;
- Ride on the sidewalks unless specifically prohibited;
- Pass a vehicle on either the right or the left side; and
- Ride through a red traffic signal if there is no immediate danger from other vehicles at the intersection.
Each of these rules is something that motor vehicle operators in Virginia should know about, as they apply directly to them when bicyclists are around. Furthermore, bicyclists are difficult to see because of their small frame, so drivers need to be aware of these rules so that they may know what to look out for, when to look out for it, and where to look. If motor vehicle drivers were more aware of what bicyclists could do and where they were allowed to ride, there would be a reduction in bicycling accidents, and therefore, a reduction in serious injuries and bicycling fatalities.
When to Retain the Help of a Leesburg Bicycling Accident Attorney
Sadly, even if a bicyclist was observing state bicycling laws at the time of their accident, they may still have a difficult time recovering damages from their own insurance company or from the defendant’s insurance company. This is because some police officers assume that a bicyclist was somehow in the wrong, and that assumption reflects in the official police report. Insurance companies rely heavily on police reports when reviewing accident claims, and many would be all to happy take the officer’s word over the victim’s when determining a settlement amount.
Additionally, even if the reporting police officer did not make ungrounded assumptions regarding liability, insurance companies are still hesitant to pay out a large settlement to individuals involved in bicycling accidents. More often than not, the settlement they offer is far below what is needed to sufficiently cover medical expenses; not to mention, the proffered settlement would not even touch damages suffered from lost wages and emotional and physical pain.
If you have been involved in a bicycling accident in Leesburg, contact our personal injury law firm to speak with a bicycling accident lawyer today. We can help you file your claim and also help you gather the supporting evidence you need to back your story, prove liability, and achieve the compensation that you need and deserve. To schedule a consultation, contact Simms Showers, LLP at 703-997-7821 today.