A bicycle accident can happen at a moment’s notice. An unsuspecting cyclist can be injured when a driver quickly opens their door or fails to check their blind spot. Sometimes, cyclists are lucky enough to walk away from a crash with only minor injuries. But other times, they need extensive medical care and rehabilitation. Learn more about common bicycle accident injuries, as well as the steps cyclists can take to help them stay safe.
Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
While both car accidents and bicycle crashes can be deadly, bicyclists do not have the protective safety features that motorists enjoy, such as airbags and seatbelts. A collision can cause injuries that range from mild to severe or even fatal. Common injuries as a result of a bicycle accident include:
Neck and Back Injuries
Trauma to the neck or back can lead to problems like chronic pain and stiffness, spinal disc herniation, and fractured vertebrae. Severe injuries can even cause damage to the victim’s spinal cord, which could lead to permanent paralysis.
Traumatic Brain Injury
Even if a cyclist is wearing a helmet, they may still suffer traumatic brain injury (TBI). Concussions are a kind of mild TBI, but more serious brain damage can lead to symptoms like loss of coordination, memory problems, behavioral changes, and seizures.
A standard bike helmet protects the skull but leaves the rider’s face exposed. A crash can result in facial injuries like:
- A broken nose
- Jaw fractures
- Chipped or lost teeth
- Facial scarring
Scrapes and scratches can also damage the rider’s corneas, leading to temporary or permanent vision loss.
A cyclist who is injured in a crash should seek emergency medical attention right away. After receiving the proper medical care, they may want to explore their legal options and rights with the help of a knowledgeable bicycle accident lawyer.
Best Practices for Bicycle Safety
Cycling is a great way to get exercise and an eco-friendly way to travel, but it can also be risky. Follow these tips to help reduce the likelihood of an injury when riding a bicycle:
- Use a helmet: Always wear a properly fitted bicycle helmet when riding. Never use a helmet that is cracked or damaged.
- Follow the law: Obey all traffic laws when using a bicycle. Take note of lane markings and traffic signs, and ride in the direction of traffic.
- Be visible: Avoid riding at night when it is more difficult for motorists to see bicyclists. If you do ride in the evenings, wear reflectors. Use bicycle lights as required by New York State law.
- Avoid hazards: Do not ride over hazards such as puddles, potholes, or debris in the road.
- Inspect your bike: Before going for a ride, ensure your tires are fully inflated, your brakes are working correctly, and there is no evidence of visible damage or parts missing on your bicycle.
- Use caution when turning: Always use the appropriate hand signals before turning left or right, and ensure there is a sufficient break in traffic to complete the turn safely.
Contact the Bicycle Accident Lawyers at James Alexander Law
If you’ve suffered an injury in a bicycle accident, you may be wondering what your rights are. At James Alexander Law, we work with victims of bike, car, and motorcycle accidents. As your local, dedicated attorney, our personal injury lawyers are committed to protecting your rights as a victim. We are happy to provide free case evaluations whether or not you decide to move forward with a claim. And our clients do not pay attorney’s fees unless we recover financial compensation for them.
With offices in East Syracuse and Rochester, NY, James Alexander Law works with individuals throughout Central New York, Rochester, the Southern Tier, and the North Country areas. We have a proven success rate in settlements and litigation. For more information or to schedule a consultation with an experienced bicycle accident lawyer near Rochester or Syracuse, call us toll-free at 1-800-LAW-1333 or contact us today.
The content of this blog was prepared by James Alexander Law for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to solicit business or provide legal advice. Laws differ by jurisdiction, and the information in this blog may not apply to you. You should seek the assistance of an attorney licensed to practice in your state before taking any action. Using this blog site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and James Alexander Law. Client relationships can only be created by written contract.