Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents in North Carolina

Every year, between 16 and 20 bicyclists are killed in motor vehicle accidents in North Carolina. Many more become seriously injured and experience lifelong effects. Unfortunately, North Carolina is one of the least safe states for bicycling and walking. Between 2007 and 2011, 4,700 bicycle motor vehicle accidents and over 12,000 pedestrian accidents were reported to authorities. Many of these bicycle accidents could have been prevented by safe driving habits.

Discuss Your Bicycle Accident Case With an Attorney

Unlike passenger vehicle drivers, bicyclists do not have the protection of a metal vehicle to shield them from injury. Cyclists only have the clothes they are wearing and their helmets, exposing them to significant bodily injuries. You may be entitled to compensation if you or your loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident in North Carolina or South Carolina. The experienced personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC, can help. Contact us today to schedule your free initial consultation and learn more about your rights.

Common Causes of North Carolina Bicycle Accidents

As mentioned above, the majority of bicycle accidents could be prevented if people used reasonable care and drove safely on North Carolina roads. Most bicycle accident lawsuits involve a defendant who acted negligently and caused the accident. Negligence refers to failure to use reasonable care under the circumstances. When an injured bicyclist can prove that the defendant acted negligently and caused their injuries, the victim may be entitled to compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.

Hit-and-Run Accidents

Hit-and-run accidents are among the most common types of motorcycle accidents in South Carolina and throughout the United States. Drivers who are negligent and reckless may swerve into a bicyclist, causing them injuries, and then drive off without stopping to check on the victim. Failure to stop and call the police is a crime in North Carolina, especially when someone is injured.

The consequences of hit-and-run accidents for a bicyclist can be serious and involve head injuries, broken bones, and spinal cord damage. We are covering compensation in these cases can be challenging. If you have been injured as a bicyclist by a hit-and-run driver, you need an experienced attorney on your side who will aggressively pursue the compensation you deserve.

Hazards on the Road

Hazardous road conditions are another common cause of bicycle accidents. Any type of hazard that disrupts the flow of traffic can be difficult to see for anyone. These types of hazards are especially difficult for bicyclists to see. Since bicyclists have little to no protection, dangers on the road can be hazardous. If you have been injured by a road hazard, you may have a right to file a claim against the city or municipality responsible for maintaining that area; however, you only have a limited amount of time to bring a claim against them. It is wise to discuss your case with an attorney as soon as possible, so you do not lose your opportunity to pursue compensation.

Distracted Driving

As with any other type of automobile accident, distracted driving is a common cause of bicycle accidents. Drivers are more distracted than ever by their cell phones, tablets, smartphones, smartwatches, and high-tech motor vehicles. With our busy lives, people are tempted to focus on texting or talking on the phone instead of on the road. Distracted driving is always dangerous. However, it can be even more dangerous for bicyclists and motorcyclists. Bicycles and motorcycles are more difficult to see. When a driver is distracted, the driver may not see the bicyclist in time to prevent an accident. In some cases, the driver claims they never saw the bicyclist because the driver was distracted.

Drunk Driving

Drunk driving is another common cause of bicycle accidents. Driving while intoxicated reduces a driver's ability to recognize and respond to dangerous conditions appropriately. For example, an intoxicated driver may misjudge how far away a bicyclist is from their vehicle, causing them to collide with the vehicle. Drunk drivers have also been known to cross into other lanes of traffic, causing head-on collisions.

They may fail to use their blinker and swerve into a bicyclist when making a lane change. These types of incidents can also involve a driver using prohibited controlled substances or abusing prescription medication. We recommend discussing your case with an attorney if a drunk or intoxicated driver has injured you. Drunk driving is considered negligent, and you may be entitled to compensation.

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