Bike Accident Injuries in Boynton Beach
Bicycle riding has recently gained in popularity, since it’s considered a healthy alternative to other forms of transportation. Because of this rise in popularity, the need to understand laws pertaining to bicycle riding has become more critical than ever. Bike riders question just what are bike riding laws in Boynton Beach and what if an injury results from bike riding? In the case of bike accident injuries in Boynton Beach, it’s suggested that you seek the advice of an experienced bike accident personal injury attorney.Statistics for Bike Accidents
Due to the nature of the weather, residents and tourists are prone to take to the roads on their bikes in Boynton Beach, as well as the rest of the state. Because of this, the region has become noted for bicycle accident injuries, including bicycle accident deaths. In 2015, Florida had the highest mortality rate in the country, while cyclists continue to increase in number in Boynton Beach.
In addition, that statistic just pertains to bicycle accident fatalities. When it comes to injuries, the number of bicycle accidents (non-fatal) in this state, exceeded 20,000 from the years 2008 to 2012. As you can see, it’s important to stress knowledge of safe bike riding in the Boynton Beach area. But, even so, even with the safest bike riding practices, accidents can still occur when irresponsible and reckless vehicle driving is involved.Is there a bicycle helmet law in Boynton Beach?
While it’s highly suggested that anyone who is riding on a bicycle to be wearing a helmet, Florida law (Statute 316.2065 (d)) states:
“A bicycle rider or passenger who is under 16 years of age must wear a bicycle helmet that is properly fitted and is fastened securely upon the passenger’s head by a strap and that meets the federal safety standard for bicycle helmets”
This law also includes those who are under the age of 16 who are riding in a trailer or sidecar that is being pulled by a bicycle.
The legal standards for bicycle helmets are specified in the Code of Federal Regulations (January 1, 2016). This may make it necessary for one to purchase a new bike helmet if their current one doesn’t adhere to the standards set down on that date. Failure to meet these helmet requirements may result in a citation. Even though a citation can be waived if the person has a proof-of-purchase for a correct specification helmet to present to the court, the point is safety, which is worth far more than a citation fee. (Statute 316.2065 (e))
“The court shall dismiss the charge against a bicycle rider or passenger for a first violation of paragraph (d) upon proof of purchase of a bicycle helmet that complies with this subsection.”
In addition, parental consent for not wearing a helmet isn’t considered under the helmet law! (Statute 316.2065 (8))If I’m in a Bicycle Accident With an Automobile in Boynton Beach, do I Need to File a Claim With my Automobile Insurance?
In Florida, there is a personal injury protection law (PIP), which is also known as a no-fault insurance law. Every driver is required to carry PIP coverage on their automobile insurance policy. If you are involved in a bicycle accident with a motor vehicle you would need to notify your automobile insurance company.Does a bicycle have the right of way in Boynton Beach?
According to Florida law (Statute 316 2065 (1)), “Every person propelling a vehicle by human power has all of the rights and all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle…” (except under special regulations).
Because of this stipulation, it’s important to understand that a bicycle is considered a “vehicle” and must adhere to those laws that motor vehicle drivers have to follow. This means that, as a bicycle rider, you don’t get special considerations just because you’re riding a bike. Therefore, there are no “special bicycle right of way rules”.Some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents
- A car makes a left turn into a cyclist coming from the opposite direction – This is particularly dangerous, since these accidents are usually head-on. They occur when the cyclist is hit by a car turning left at an intersection. It can be avoided by the cyclist understanding and paying attention to vehicle turn signals.
- The cyclist pulls out onto a street – This accident results in many fatalities per year. The speed of the approaching motor vehicle is often too much for it to stop suddenly when a bicycle appears in front of them with no warning.
- Vehicle makes a right turn and hits a cyclist – This can be avoided if the cyclist stays aware of the motor vehicle’s turn signals when riding alongside them.
- Car pulls out and hits the cycle – This is the most common accident of this type.
- A motor vehicle rear ends a cyclist while they’re changing lanes – This is also a common accident that can arise from a cyclist not using the proper turning signals. These accidents will often result in serious injuries with possible fatalities.
- Head and Neck Injuries – These types of injuries can be extremely serious, with some not being detected until they have become more serious. This is why these injuries account for over half of all bicycle accident fatalities. Needless to say, wearing a helmet will certainly decrease the chances of this injury type!
- Jaw and Dental Injuries – Many of these injuries can be avoided by the wearing of a mouth guard. However, those cyclists who ride on a casual basis might not adhere to this protective measure. Lost teeth and actual bone damage may occur in many bike accidents.
- Bone and Muscle Injuries – Broken bones and torn/damaged muscles are common injuries associated with bike riding accidents.
- Skin Lacerations – These are the most common types of bicycle accident injuries. They can range from minor cuts and “road rash” to more serious and traumatic damage that requires plastic surgery and removal of embedded debris.
First of all, as with any accident that involves injuries, you should check if yourself or anyone involved is injured. Also, you want to make sure that no vehicle or bicycle is blocking the roadway and that everyone is located off to the side of the road, if possible.Contact the police
Be sure to call 911, so that emergency personnel and the police can document the incident and create a report. This report will be obtained by the insurance companies and any attorneys that are involved.Look over and document the accident scene
Double-check all the accident details and take photos of the accident scene, if possible. There have been cases in which a small detail meant the difference between full medical compensation and no compensation at all. You should also obtain contact information from any witnesses.Visit a doctor immediately
Even in cases in which you feel okay and don’t notice any apparent bike accident injuries, you should have a doctor check you out. The reason for this has to do with many types of injuries that can remain hidden until later. This is especially true with head and neck injuries which, by the way, are the causes for over half of eventual bike accident fatalities. Also, PIP usually won’t pay for any medical bills if you wait till after 14 days to get checked.Notify your insurance company
Be sure to contact your insurance carrier and notify them that you were involved in an accident.DO NOT speak with the other party’s insurance company
It’s possible that the other insurance company is searching for ways to keep from having to pay for any accident-related expenses. You are not required to speak to the other insurance company and you shouldn’t – especially if they offer you money. Be sure to contact an experienced personal injury attorney who can try to assist you with your claim.Contact an experienced Bicycle Accident Attorney serving Boynton Beach
Getting the compensation that you deserve for bicycle accident injuries can be a complicated affair. Since a first appointment with a Boynton Beach bicycle accident attorney is free, you have nothing to lose from getting their advice on how to proceed. An experienced Boynton Beach personal injury attorney can assist you in getting compensated for economic expenses such as:
- Past (and future) medical expenses
- Past (and future) lost earnings
- Lost ability to work
- Costs of repair to your personal property
You may even be eligible for compensation for non-economic damages such as:
- Loss of enjoyment in everyday life
- Loss of consortium
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
Deaths and injuries from careless riding decisions can result in catastrophic bike accidents, which may occur in Boynton Beach at any given time. In addition, it’s important to understand that while high vehicle speeds are often a factor, there are also many times when this isn’t the situation. There have been a number of cases in which a very low speed bike crash has resulted in severe injuries. The injuries involved may include brain damage and various internal organ injuries.
Therefore, if you or a loved one has been injured in a bike crash, seek medical care and contact a bike accident personal injury attorney.
Discuss your case with with a Personal Injury Attorney Serving Boynton Beach Today! Turn to Frankl & Kominsky for comprehensive legal guidance. Call (561) 800-8000 or use our Contact Form to set up a free consultation.