In the first six months of 2012, twelve New Yorkers died and 1,651 people were seriously injured after being struck by a motor vehicle while riding their bicycles in NYC. The bicyclists who were injured frequently reported suffering from broken bones, dental-related injuries, burned and cut skin, head trauma, skull fractures, and more. In many of the cases, fault laid squarely on the shoulders of the involved motor vehicle driver.
If you are an unwarranted bicyclist victim of motor vehicle assault, you are not alone. For victims and victims’ families, it is important to learn more about the causes of NYC bicycle accidents and the city’s insufficient safety enforcement in regards to them, in addition to contacting a New York automobile accident lawyer to file a case against the driver at fault. By doing so, not only will it be possible to obtain financial restitution for your case, but you can add to the growing public outcry against reckless drivers and the inadequate enforcement of safe conditions for pedestrians and cyclists.
The Growth of Bicycles
Commuting by bike is the new buzzword around town. In March 2013, the Citi Bike program disbursed 10,000 new bicycles throughout the streets of New York City. These bikes are part of a bike-share program, in which users rent bicycles when and where they need them. In addition to this program, the city in conjunction with the mayor’s office has added 255 bike-lane miles to city streets and increased bicycle parking facilities. Today, 500,000 New Yorkers use bicycles, and that number is steadily growing.
Poor Law Enforcement
Despite the very obvious growing popularity of bicycling in general and the very vocal support of a cycle-friendly city by the mayor’s office, the New York Police Department has been found largely lacking when it comes to enforcing bicycling safety. Time and again, officers have failed to write citations in situations of bicycle-motor vehicle accidents except in the cases of death, or near death. Despite most bicycle-motor vehicle accidents being the fault of the driver for one or more of the following reasons:
• inattention or distraction, often because of texting or using a cell phone while driving
• failure to yield to the bicycle’s right of way
• tailgating or not giving the bicyclist a safe distance when passing
• disregard for stop signs, yield signs, and red lights
• making improper turns, such as making a sudden left-turn
• failure to check blind spot and make sudden, unsafe lane changes
Victims’ Legal Remedies
Instead of placing greater stress on the fault of the accident-causing driver, most literature argues for the bicyclist to protect oneself (for example, there is a bigger stress of bicyclist should “wear a helmet” and not drivers should yield right of way). This makes it ever more important for bicyclists, who have a right to use all “main and local streets” regardless of whether or not they include designated bike lanes, to come forward to seek legal repercussions when they are victims of an automobile-caused injury. If you are hit, contact a New York automobile accident lawyer who specializes in bicyclist cases immediately, so that an investigation may begin before the necessary witnesses and evidence disappears.
Contact a New York City Automobile Accident Lawyer Today
An experienced New York automobile accident lawyer can best advise both the victim and the victim’s family on the best recovery of damages for property, medical bills, and other losses. In most cases the driver’s insurance carrier will provide “no-fault” insurance that covers all related bills, regardless of fault. Additionally, a lawsuit may be possible to collect money damages for pain and suffering.
The New York automobile accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Mark E. Weinberger are leading personal injury attorneys who have helped accident victims for over 29 years. For a free consultation and case review, call us today at 516-829-7270, or fill out a contact form.