Bicycle accidents are more common than you might think, especially in large cities like Knoxville where bicyclists and motorists must share the roads. Nationwide during 2013, almost one-half million people were injured in bicycle accidents and over 900 people were killed in bicycle crashes.
During that same year, 453 bicycle crashes occurred in Tennessee. That number remained about the same for 2015 (455 total bicycle accidents) with Knox county having the third highest number of crashes. Regardless of the reason why a bicycle accident occurs, the results are the same — physical, emotional, and financial damages for the accident victim. An experienced Knoxville bicycle accident attorney can help recover compensation for injured bicyclists to help with the costs of an accident.
Common Causes Of Bicycle Accidents in Knoxville, TN
There are many causes for bicycle accidents ranging from rider error to other drivers and road conditions. The dangers for bicyclists vary; therefore, bicyclists must always remain alert and on guard for dangerous conditions that can result in a bicycle accident including:
- Dangerous road conditions including pot holes, road debris, uneven surfaces, and loose gravel
- Inclement weather such as rain, fog, ice, and snow
- Motorists running red lights, failing to yield the right of way, opening doors in front of bicyclists, passing too closely, and other dangerous actions
- Bicyclists riding while impaired by alcohol and/or drugs
- Distracted motorists and distracted bicyclists
- Improperly maintained equipment and/or defective products
Because a bicycle rider receives the full impact in a collision, the injuries in a bicycle accident tend to be traumatic. Common injuries caused by a bicycle accident include traumatic brain injury and other head injuries; broken bones; internal bleeding; road rash; lacerations, spinal cord, neck, and back injuries; and, paralysis.
The amount of compensation a bicycle crash victim is entitled to receive under Tennessee’s personal injury laws will depend on the type and severity of your injuries and the facts of the accident.
What Damages Can I Receive In A Bicycle Accident?
In order to receive damages in a Tennessee bicycle accident, you must prove that another person or party is at fault for the crash. For example, if you can prove a driver pulled in front of you causing you to collide with the car when you had the right of way, the driver’s insurance company will be liable for paying your damages. However, insurance companies fight bicycle accident claims as aggressively as the companies fight other personal injury claims.
Therefore, it is crucial that you hire a bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible so that your attorney can begin an investigation to identify and preserve key evidence that will prove the other driver or party caused the bicycle crash. Once your attorney has established fault for the accident, you will be entitled to receive compensation for damages including but not limited to:
- Medical bills including future medical expenses related to the injuries
- Lost income including future lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity if you are unable to return to the same work or you earn less because of your injuries
- Property damages
- Mental anguish, emotional stress, and physical pain
- Funeral costs in the event of a death
- Permanent disability, scarring, and disfigurement
- Reasonable expenses related to the injuries and your recovery
One of our experienced bicycle accident lawyers will discuss the compensation you may be entitled to receive based on the specific facts of your cause during your free consultation.
What Should I Do After A Knoxville Bicycle Accident?
Always seek immediate medical attention after a bicycle accident to prevent your injuries from becoming more serious or life threatening. If you do not require emergency medical services, see your family doctor as soon as possible for a complete examination. You must also do this in order to document your physical injuries in order to receive compensation from the responsible party.
You should also contact the police immediately to report the accident. Remain at the scene of the crash, unless you require emergency medical attention, to file a police report. Ask the officer when you will be able to get a copy of his report.
If possible, while at the scene of the bicycle accident:
- Take pictures of the accident scene to show the environment as it was at the time of the crash;
- Obtain the name and contact information for the other driver and a description of the vehicle (i.e. make, model, year, color, license plate number, etc.);
- Obtain the names and contact information of all eye witnesses to the accident. Eye witness testimony is a powerful form of evidence at a trial; and,
- Retain your clothing, safety equipment, and bicycle as evidence of the damage from the collision.
As soon as possible after a bicycle accident, contact an attorney. The personal injury attorneys of Hodges, Doughty & Carson, PLLC have extensive experience handling Knoxville bicycle accident claims. The insurance company for the driver or other party will have a team of professionals working for it to lower the compensation you receive for your injuries. You deserve to have a highly skilled and trained team on your side to protect your rights and to even out the playing field in your favor.
Contact our office by calling 865-292-2307 or click here to schedule your free consultation with an experienced Knoxville bicycle accident attorney.