There are so many reasons to get out on your bicycle when you live in Gwinnett County, Georgia. Temperate year-round weather, beautiful roads, and ease of transportation all contribute to the popularity of biking in this area. While most drivers are cognizant of the traffic rules and are careful to watch for bikers on the road, unfortunately, some are unaware of their responsibility to share the road safely. Those motor vehicle drivers who ignore traffic laws and don’t look for bicycles on the road can cause incredibly dangerous accidents, where often, serious injuries occur.
Common Dangers on the Road for Bicycles
Riding a bicycle on the road with other motor vehicles is inherently more dangerous for the bike rider, simply because they are not protected by the metal shell that a car or truck provides. Even when a bike rider is wearing a helmet, they are completely exposed otherwise. For this reason, the bike rider is almost always the one who receives the most serious injuries in a collision with another motor vehicle. Sometimes these injuries are even fatal. We’ve identified a few of the common dangers that bicycle riders can watch for on the road. That said, even the most careful bike rider is still reliant on the traffic around them to act with caution as well.
- Distracted drivers. Any driver who is not fully paying attention to the task of driving can be considered “distracted.” This is both one of the most common and dangerous scenarios on the roads today. With the common use of cell phones when driving, whether the driver is using a map app or sending a text to a friend, we’ve seen a large increase in the number of distracted driving accidents in recent years. Watch for signs of distracted driving such as a vehicle that’s swerving in and out of a lane or misses a stop sign at all times. If you notice that someone is driving at night with a light illuminating from the driver’s side seat, there is a high possibility they are using their cell phone. Any time you believe someone is driving while distracted, move out of their way and let them pass.
- Night time visibility. Most have specific laws in regards to riding a bike at night, such as the requirement to have both a visible front and back light on your bicycle. In Georgia, if you are going out at night, you’re required to ride with a white light on the front of your bike that emits at least 300 feet in front of you. It is always a good idea to have a light on the back of your bike as well. The more visible you are at night, the easier it will be for cars to see you and avoid a collision. Try to wear bright clothing as well and never go out without your helmet.
- Road hazards. The unknown is especially dangerous for bike riders. Going out on a new route or taking a new road bears the risk of unseen obstacles that can inhibit your safety. Road hazards such as potholes and construction zones are risky for bike riders because they pose an increased potential of an accident. A rider can easily break bones, sustain a concussion, or experience a TBI when colliding with a misplaced construction sign that road crews did not properly illuminate at night. If you fall off your bike because of an unmarked pothole, who is to blame? This is a question that you will want to discuss with your attorney.
- Drunk drivers. There is no doubt that drunk drivers impose on the safety of themselves and everyone else on the road. It is most common for drunk drivers to be out at night, driving home after they have had too much to drink. The combination of a drunk driver and limited visibility when it’s dark out create an incredibly dangerous situation for anyone on a bicycle. It’s important to watch for the signs that a driver is drunk. If you see a car swerving all over the road or driving far above or below the speed limit, that’s a good indication that the driver is intoxicated and you should remove yourself from the scene immediately.
How an Attorney Can Help
When you have suffered injuries in a bicycle accident, there are many different pieces at play. You might wonder who the liable party is, especially if you were injured at a construction accident when no one was around. Working with the insurance companies can be a tricky business as well, especially when you’re not aware of all of your rights. An attorney can help to:
- Evaluate the viability of your claim
- Estimate the value of damages
- Work together with the insurance companies so you can be such the correct information is being communicated
- Fight for your right to full and fair compensation for your injuries
One of the unspoken advantages of working with an experienced attorney is peace of mind. When you’re going through the trauma of healing from a serious injury, you don’t need the stress of dealing with a claim as well. Your attorney is your advocate and will allow you to focus on recovery.
Don’t Hesitate—Speak With an Experienced Gwinnett County Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
After a bicycle accident, you might be dealing with a lot of different issues. Beyond serious injuries incurred, many people struggle to manage time off work and the stress due to lost wages and expensive medical bills. This can feel like a lonely time, and it’s often difficult to figure out what you should do after a bicycle accident.
The legal team Brauns Law are here to help. We have extensive experience working with clients in Gwinnett County who have been injured and are seeking compensation for their damages. Let us take on the burden of dealing with the insurance companies and the claims process so you can focus on your recovery. Call us today at (404) 418-8244 or write to us online to schedule a free initial consultation.