New York is a bicycle- and pedestrian-heavy state, with 1,133 miles of bicycle lanes in New York City alone. Over the last several years, biking has become even more popular in the state of New York, resulting in an increase of bicyclists on the roads. Unfortunately, this can also mean a greater number of accidents. In 2017, 4,397 bicyclists suffered injuries and 24 died throughout all five of New York City’s boroughs. Obeying biking laws can help you avoid collisions.
A bicycle in New York is a two- or three-wheeled human-powered device. Motor-powered bicycles fall under different laws than standard bikes. All bicyclists in the state of New York are subject to the provisions of state and city traffic rules. Laws that apply to motor vehicles and their operators also apply to bicyclists, except where not applicable. Bicycles have a right to the roadways when bicycle lanes are unavailable.
New York City bicycle accident attorneys provide help to victims of bike accidents and to family members of bike riders who are killed in collisions. Unfortunately, according to Chelsea Patch, more fatal bike accidents occurred in 2017 even as overall traffic fatalities dropped. Bike accidents can occur when drivers do not share the road in a safe and responsible way with bicyclists. It is important for those who are harmed in bike accidents to take appropriate legal action and pursue a claim for compensation from drivers responsible for causing collisions that harmed them.
Bicycle riders face a significant risk of injury while riding on New York's roads and should contact New York City bicycle accident lawyers if injuries occur. To try to reduce the risk of harm to riders and make the roads safer, there are many bicycle lanes throughout New York City. These bike lanes provide dedicated spaces for bicyclists and they should reduce the risk of collisions occurring. One new bicycle lane, however, has been having the opposite impact as intended. Instead of making motorists and bicyclists safer, the bike lane has increased crash risks so much so that lawmakers and community members are requesting the new bike lane be removed.
According to the Pedestrian and Bicycling Information Center, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that in 2015, 818 people died in bicycle/motor vehicle accidents in the United States – over 2 people every day of the year. This represents a 6% increase in bicyclist deaths since 2006 (772 bicyclist fatalities) and a 12.2% increase from 2014. It also reported that there were an estimated 45,000 bicyclists injuries in 2015 – a 2.3% increase since 2006. According to the National Safety Council, each year the US spends over $4 billion dollars towards bicyclist injuries and fatalities. Bicycle accidents can cause serious and in some cases fatal injuries. Filing a lawsuit to recover damages for injuries in a bicycle accident with a motor vehicle or a negligent property owner involves a number of the same issues as any car accident lawsuit. When it comes to bike accidents, liability for injuries often boils down to negligence – whether the negligent actions of an automobile driver or property owner resulted in the bicyclist’s injuries, and whether there was any negligence on the bicyclist’s part that contributed to or caused the accident.
New York City bicycle accident lawyers provide assistance in circumstances where a bike rider has been hurt as a result of a collision with a motor vehicle. Bicycle riders, unfortunately, can be seriously hurt due to the force of impact from a collision because their bike does not provide protection from that impact. The potential severity of injuries sustained can make bike accident claims more complicated. One recent serious accident involving a bicycle rider and an Uber cab driver is an unfortunate illustration of the impact that a collision between a car and a bicycle can have on a bike rider. This accident also raises special issues because of the fact that the driver of the vehicle was working for a ride-sharing company at the time of the incident. When a driver of a ride-sharing company is involved in a crash, questions can arise regarding whether the company itself could be liable for losses caused to victims.