According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 800 bicyclists were killed on U.S. roadways in 2018, and there are an estimated 450,000 bicycle-related accidents every year. The estimated lifetime costs of fatal and nonfatal bicycle accidents are around $10 billion in lost productivity, treatment, lost wages, and property damage. With the rising popularity of bikes and other eco-friendly modes of transport, these figures can potentially rise over the years to come.
If you were involved in a bike accident, you may have grounds for filing a personal injury claim against those responsible for your injuries. To file a claim, you must gather all the relevant evidence and documentation, and file your claim with the right legal entities within the prescribed statutes of limitation. A bike accident attorney in Bucks County with Cordisco & Saile LLC may be able to assist you. Please contact our team at (215) 642-2335 for a free case evaluation.
Bike Accident Risk Factors
A bike accident can happen to anyone at any time, but several risk factors can contribute to higher bike accident rates. For example, the CDC reports that adults between the ages of 50 and 59 have the highest incidence rate of bicycle accident fatalities. Children and young adults ages of five through 19 have the highest incidence rate of non-lethal accidents.
Most bicyclist fatalities occur at non-intersections in urban areas and between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. due to lack of visibility, but everyone should exercise caution whenever biking on the road. In accidents involving motor vehicles and bicyclists, the bicyclists are more likely to suffer injuries and damages than occupants of the motor vehicle. Common injuries seen in bicycle accidents include:
- Rashes and burns.
- Head trauma.
- Broken bones.
- Lacerations and cuts.
- Internal organ damage.
- Spinal cord damage.
Other damages and losses that may arise as a result of a bike accident include:
- Damage to your bike and other property.
- Medical care and diagnostic testing costs.
- Lost income or an inability to work.
- Mental anguish and emotional trauma.
A bike accident attorney in Bucks County can help you identify the at-fault parties responsible for your accident and evaluate your losses and damages, so that you can file a personal injury claim if the circumstances surrounding your accident warrant one.
Insurance Coverage in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania follows a no-fault personal injury system. In this system, the victims of an accident can seek compensation from their personal insurer irrespective of who was at fault for the accident in question. Individuals can also use their personal injury protection policy–or PIP coverage–for compensation for accident losses, medical expenses and lost income up to certain limits. PIP is a requirement in Pennsylvania.
In addition to PIP coverage, you can choose between limited or full liability coverage. The difference between the two is that the former is cheaper but can typically only covers certain medical expenses, not including pain, suffering, or other non-economic damages. The latter is more expensive, but it gives you the option of suing the at-fault party for all damates, including pain and suffering.
These different forms of coverage are important to understand because if you are a bicyclist who was struck by a motorist, the personal injury and private medical insurance policy you have—as well as the policies that the motorist has, if any—will be used to determine the compensation limits that you may be able to recover. According to the Insurance Information Institute, only about one in 12 drivers in Pennsylvania lack insurance, but issues with inadequate or unapplicable coverage can always arise.
A bike accident attorney in Bucks County can help you understand the various damages that you may be entitled to and the evidentiary requirements for winning compensation. An attorney can also discuss the various timelines by which you need to file documentation and paperwork. Call (215) 642-2335 now to speak with a representative of Cordisco & Saile LLC to schedule a consultation.
Building Your Bucks County Bike Accident Claim
In terms of evidence, you may be able to use some or all of the following in support of a bicycle accident claim:
- Video or photos from the accident scene
- Dashcam/headcam footage from the vehicle and the bicycle
- Eyewitness statements
- Cellphone records to prove distracted driving
- Driver blood alcohol levels to confirm or rule out driving under the influence
- The official police report of your accident
In some cases, especially those that involve injuries and medical expense claims of some sort, you may have to provide the testimony of a medical professional in support of your claim before you can file one. This testimony is usually submitted to the at-fault party’s insurer in a letter known as a letter of intent to sue. Some insurance companies only process medical insurance and personal injury claims that include this documentation. This is something our team can assist you with.
Handling a personal injury claim, gathering evidence, and negotiating with insurance adjusters can be difficult if you suffered injuries in an accident and are trying to recover. This is where an attorney may be able to assist you. The bike accident attorney in Bucks County with Cordisco & Saile LLC can help you put together a claim and pursue any damages owed to you, based on the circumstances surrounding your case and all available evidence.
Please call us today at (215) 642-2335 for a free, no obligation consultation. Statutes of limitation—typically set to about two years after an accident occurs—apply to personal injury cases such as bicycle accident cases, so do not hesitate to contact us today.