Bicycle Accident Lawyers in El Cajon
In 2016, 835 bicyclists were killed in accidents with motor vehicles and 87% of those fatalities were adults 20 years and older according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. 71% of bicycle fatality accidents occurred in urban areas and 29% occurred in rural areas. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that here in California there were 147 bicyclist fatalities in 2016. There were 20 fatalities in Los Angeles, 1 in San Diego, 3 in San Jose, and 1 in San Francisco. You may look at these numbers and think that they do not seem like a lot, but these are only the fatalities and the vast majority of bicycle accidents are not fatal. Bicycling is a dangerous activity and accident injuries can be temporarily or permanently life altering.
Common California Bicycle Accident Scenarios
- Motor vehicle accident – Bicyclists involved in motor vehicle accidents are often sideswiped or rear-ended. It is also common for a motor vehicle to cross into a bicyclist’s path or turn into a bicyclist at an intersection.
- Roadway maintenance – Roadways that are not properly maintained or repaired cause a number of bicyclist accidents each year.
- Someone/something entering a bicyclist’s path – Bicycle accidents often occur when something or someone suddenly enters a bicycle’s path such as a child, dog, another bicycle, or a car door opening.
Common causes of motor vehicle negligence in bicycle accidents include distracted driving, drivers who are not on the lookout for bicyclists and do not see them, unsafe speeds, and failure to obey traffic signals/signs. We have also seen more and more aggressive behavior towards bicyclists that result in accidents. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, contact El Cajon accident attorney, Eugene G. Bruno, to schedule a consultation.
California Laws Relating to Bicycles on the Road
California’s laws governing bicycles and car/bicycle operation on the road include some of the following:
- Bicycles and sidewalks–Rules for bicycles operating on sidewalks are based on municipal rules. Only a few municipalities, like El Cajon, prohibit riding on the sidewalk entirely. Others allow bicycles on sidewalks with some guidelines and exceptions.
- Generally bicycles are to ride with traffic and on the right side of the road.
- California law requires reflectors and lights for bicyclists at night.
- Bicycles are to use the bicycle lane except in certain circumstances such as appropriately making a turn or avoiding/passing something in the bicycle lane.
- Drivers must pass/overtake a bicycle with a three-foot buffer between the car and the bicycle.
- If conditions prohibit a three-foot buffer, the driver must slow to a reasonable speed and only pass when it is safe for the bicyclist, taking into account the size and speed of the vehicle and bicyclist, weather, visibility, and highway surface.
Injuries and Damages
Bicycles are small and have little protection compared to motor vehicles sharing the road and that makes for potentially catastrophic bicycle accident injuries. Call Eugene Bruno & Associates so we can help you recover for your injuries and damages including pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, lost future earnings, and property damage. Our bicycle accident team wants to see that you are fully compensated for your injuries.