Riding your bike in Austin can be a joy. Our cyclist-friendly city makes riding a bike for work or pleasure easy and fun. But if a distracted motorist doesn’t follow traffic rules, the fun can turn frightening in an instant.
Have you or someone you love suffered an injury due to a bicycling accident in Austin? Was this accident caused by a negligent motorist violating the rules of the road? If so, consider talking to the Austin bicycle accident attorneys at Loewy Law Firm about filing a personal injury claim or lawsuit. We may be able to help you get compensation for your medical bills, lost earnings, or pain and suffering. Call us today at 512-280-0800 for a free consultation, and let us show you how with a free consultation. Call Loewy Law Firm today.
Traffic and Bicycle Laws in Austin
Mixing bicycles and vehicles on city streets is a complex undertaking. Though cyclists are expected to follow the same laws as motorists, the lines can get blurry in heavy traffic conditions, and accidents are frequent.
Here are some laws governing cycling in Austin and how to interact with traffic:
- Cars are allowed to park in some bike lanes in Austin.
- Motorists must yield to cyclists when turning left or right.
- Children 17 and under are required to wear an approved bicycle safety helmet.
- Using a cell phone or portable device while cycling is prohibited.
- Cyclists cannot ride more than two abreast in a lane.
- Riding on certain sidewalks in the city is prohibited.
- Bicycles riding in Texas at night must have a white front light and a rear red light or reflector.
- Bikes and mobility devices cannot block or impede traffic or pedestrians when parked.
- Signaling is highly encouraged.
How Traffic Violations Could Cause Bike Accidents
Per the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, almost 900 cyclists died in traffic accidents in 2019. These accidents are largely preventable if drivers and bicyclists practice good habits and ride or drive defensively. As long as both motorists and cyclists follow the rules of the road, accidents and injuries can be kept at a minimum.
Many factors contribute to traffic violations and may cause accidents with cyclists, such as:
- Driver distraction
- Driver impairment
- Inadequate surveillance
- Low light conditions
- Poorly marked bike lanes
- Driver fatigue
- Bad weather conditions
- Driver error
- Reckless driving
Injuries Caused By Negligent Drivers
Collisions between bicycles and vehicles are always going to end up worse for the cyclist. The standard passenger car is around 12 feet long and weighs about 4,000 pounds. Compared to a 170-pound cyclist and 40-pound bike, a car at speed is the same as a giant boulder rolling down a hill.
Bicycles have little or no safety protection, and adult cyclists in Austin are not required to wear a safety helmet, so cyclists are at a disadvantage the moment they start sharing the road with motor vehicles. Whereas a motorist has the protection of a steel safety cage, seatbelts, airbags, and other safety equipment, a cyclist hit by a car or truck can easily be severely injured in the hips or knees during the initial impact, be ejected from the bike with great force, and strike the concrete or pavement causing even more injury. Even if the cyclist is wearing a helmet, the chance of severe injury during a crash with a vehicle is extreme.
Some common injuries from bicycle accidents include:
- Broken bones
- Hip and knee injuries
- Head and neck injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Road rash
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Crushing injuries
Compensation for a Negligent Driving Accident
We help our clients obtain monetary compensation through a personal injury claim paid by the responsible party’s insurance company or a lawsuit filed in Texas Civil Court against the responsible party directly. Obtaining this compensation requires proving negligence. You must use available evidence to show that the person or party responsible had a duty to behave safely, didn’t do so, caused an accident, and this accident caused you injuries and losses. If you can prove negligence, you should have a valid compensation claim.
We typically refrain from estimating the amount we could obtain as each accident is unique with its own particular circumstances, at least until we have discussed the particulars of your accident with you.
Most injury claims are resolved with a settlement from the insurance company before either side goes to court. A settlement is a cash payment to compensate you for any losses. Typically, to receive a settlement, you must agree to drop any legal claim you have against the liable party.
You can be compensated for various losses or damages that can be attributed to your accident. Some losses are easily quantifiable, and some require the help of an attorney to define and estimate.
Losses with a verifiable dollar value are called economic damages. There are several types, such as:
- Lost earnings, now or in the future
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Lost opportunity
Losses without a verifiable dollar value are called noneconomic damages. These losses relate to the mental strain of the accident and injury instead of the financial cost of dealing with them. Some examples include:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment
- Loss of consortium
- Reputational damage
How Loewy Law Can Help
We can help make sure the motorist responsible for your bicycle accident is brought to justice. We are intimately familiar with Texas injury law and craft strategies that get the results our clients demand.
Our knowledge and experience will be invaluable, and our level of service is second-to-none. At Loewy Law Firm, we do the hard work, so you don’t have to. We will investigate your accident in-depth to determine how it occurred and who was at fault. We will use this information to build a rock-solid claim supported by factual evidence and expert testimony.
We can’t guarantee a positive outcome for your claim, but we can guarantee we will give you and your family the support you need while we work hard to get you the compensation you deserve.
Call Loewy Law Firm Today
Texas has a strict two-year statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits, so don’t delay any longer. Call Loewy Law Firm for a free, no-obligation consultation today. Don’t let a negligent motorist end your cycling days. Call 512-280-0800 today.