If you’ve been hurt in any accident, contact our Indianapolis personal injury lawyers today for a free case evaluation.
In recent years, Indianapolis has added miles of bike lanes to its road system, giving cyclists their own space alongside automobile traffic. But even with their own lanes, bike riders remain vulnerable when sharing the road with cars, trucks, and buses.
According to data reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2011 there were 677 bicyclist deaths and 48,000 reported injuries across the US, even though bike riders still form a relatively small proportion of travelers on the road. Approximately 29% of bicyclist injuries stem from collisions with cars.
A recent example of the vulnerability of cyclists came from a terrible accident in Northwest Indianapolis. A bicyclist heading west on a bike lane died after colliding with a school bus that had been heading east and was making a turn northwards.
At this point, it isn’t clear what caused the accident or who was responsible for it. The police are looking into the typical issues, although it doesn’t seem that speed or drug use factored into it. All it can take is a moment’s inattention for an accident to occur. Maybe the bicyclist slipped out of the bus driver’s line of sight. Perhaps the driver tried to brake, but there was something faulty with the mechanism on the bus. All of these issues need to be looked into.
In a collision with a motor vehicle, bicyclists are at a higher risk of death and injury, as their bodies are fully exposed to the impact; in this recent accident, the bicyclist was using the bike lane and wearing a helmet, but still succumbed to fatal injuries.
However, for any given accident, the motor vehicle driver isn’t automatically held at fault. In the aftermath of an accident, bicyclists are also scrutinized for their behavior on the road. For instance, were they speeding? Pedaling through red lights? Weaving across lanes, through traffic, in a reckless way? Given that Indiana is a comparative fault state, even when the bike rider’s own negligence contributed to an accident, they can still obtain money in an insurance settlement if their share of the fault doesn’t exceed 50%.
Do you need the advice of one of our Indianapolis personal injury lawyers?
Because of the tremendous costs of a crash, and the potentially devastating injuries bicyclists can suffer on the road, it’s important to contact experienced Indianapolis personal injury lawyers to review your case and receive legal advocacy. As a vulnerable road user, you need to consider working with an attorney who is sensitive to your needs and will fight for the compensation you deserve.