When people have bicycle accidents in Baton Rouge, they may be seriously injured or killed. When the motorists are at fault, the injured bicyclists or the families of cyclists who were killed may file lawsuits to hold them accountable for their losses. Bicycle accident lawsuits will depend on whether the motorists were negligent or if the cyclists’ own negligence led to or contributed to the crash. Our Baton Rouge attorneys have handled many accidents involving bicycles, and we are able to analyze the facts of what happened so that we can provide honest assessments about potential bicycle accident claims. When we agree to accept a claim, we thoroughly investigate what happened so that we can build the strongest cases of liability for our clients. This makes it likelier that our clients will recover fair compensation for the losses that were caused by the accidents. Contact our Baton Rouge bicycle accident attorney.
What qualifies for filing a bicycle accident lawsuit?
In order to have a valid legal basis for filing a bicycle accident lawsuit, the motorist or another third party must have been negligent, and the negligence must have proximately or directly caused the subsequent accident. Finally, you must have been injured and have suffered financial harm to qualify for filing a bicycle accident lawsuit. A motorist’s negligence may take many different forms, including speeding, reckless driving, crossing the line, following too closely, distracted driving and others.
Frequency of bicycle accidents in Baton Rouge
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 818 bicyclists were killed in the U.S. in 2015. In Louisiana, 34 cyclists died. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that Louisiana was ranked third in the nation for the highest bicycle fatality rates in 2014. In 2015, Louisiana had the second highest rate of fatalities behind Florida. Bicycle accidents accounted for 4.7 percent of all traffic fatalities for a fatality rate of 7.3 per one million people. Bicycle accidents are underreported. In many cases in which the cyclists do not suffer serious injuries, the accidents may not be reported to the police, or the responding officers may not write reports.
Common injuries that happen in bicycle accidents
In many bicycle accidents, the cyclists are struck and caused to fall to the ground. These types of accidents often cause fractures to the hands, wrists and arms. Other common types of injuries that commonly occur in bicycle accidents include the following:
• Traumatic brain injuries
• Spinal cord injuries
• Leg and foot fractures
• Ruptured or bulging discs
• Pelvic fractures
• Internal injuries
Serious accidents involving bicycles may cause multiple injuries, and some people may be killed.
When to take legal action after a bicycle accident in Baton Rouge
Like other states, Louisiana has a prescribed limitations period for filing personal injury claims. Bicycle accident cases are types of personal injury claims, so they must be filed within the specified time period. In Louisiana, personal injury claims must be filed no later than one year after the date of the injury under LA Civ. Code § 3492. If you wait to file your bicycle accident claim until that time period has expired, you will not be able to recover damages for the losses that resulted from it.
In practice, it is best to not wait until the statutory time period is almost finished. If you do, your attorney may have difficulty with filing a claim in time. It is better to contact an experienced bicycle accident attorney soon after your accident. Doing so can help you to strengthen your claim because your attorney will have the opportunity to thoroughly investigate the circumstances of the accident before important evidence is lost.
Why you should contact a Baton Rouge bicycle accident attorney
It is important to retain a Baton Rouge bicycle accident lawyer for help with your claim. Insurance companies often try to place the blame for bicycle accidents on the cyclists in an effort to avoid paying claims. Bicycle accident lawyers are familiar with the various tactics that insurance companies use to try to minimize their losses. They are able to build claims to counteract the common defenses. Contact our office today to schedule a consultation so that you can have your potential claim evaluated by an attorney.
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Our attorneys will review your case and represent you throughout your bicycle crash claim. Contact Broussard & Hart L.L.C. today for help pursuing a bike accident settlement. Your first consultation is free and we won’t charge fees unless money is recovered.
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