Bicycle Accidents in South Florida
Since August, at least four bicycle accidents in south Florida have resulted in the death or critical injury of the bicyclist. In each case, the bicycle accident was the result of a collision with a motor vehicle. In August 2015, a hit-and-run driver in Fort Lauderdale, FL critically injured a bicyclist when the car’s left front bumper collided with the bicycle. In September 2015, a boy was struck and an adult was killed in two separate bicycle accidents. A 9-year old boy was struck by a vehicle while standing beside his bicycle in Coral Gables, FL and a 46-year old man was killed when a minivan struck his bicycle in Pompano Beach, FL.
Just last month on November 9, 2015, a bicyclist and the driver of a stolen vehicle were both killed in a collision in Miami, FL. According to a report prepared by the Florida Pedestrian and Bicycle Strategic Safety Plan, the bicycle fatality rate in Florida during 2011 was triple the national average. In 2013, Florida had the second highest bicycle fatality rates with 133 deaths. The most common cause of bicycle accidents is a collision with a motor vehicle.
Due to the disparity between the vehicles involved in a car-bicycle accident, the bicyclist is at a much higher risk for severe injury or death compared to the driver of the vehicle. Therefore, cyclists in non-fatal bicycle accidents are likely to suffer traumatic and permanent injuries from bicycle accidents.
What do I Need to Know About Bicycle Accidents in South Florida?
Bicycling is a popular form of recreation in south Florida. It is also a great form of exercise and inexpensive transportation. If you are in a bicycle accident, the steps you take after the crash can affect your settlement in a bicycle accident claim.
- Seek immediate medical attention. Your first priority is your health, call for emergency medical assistance if you are severely injured. If you do not require emergency medical care, seek medical treatment as soon as possible even if your injuries seem minor at the time. You many not develop symptoms of a more serious injury such as a closed head injury for several days.
- Call the police. Contact law enforcement to report the accident. You should obtain a copy of the accident report with the driver’s name and information. If for any reason the police do not investigate the accident, obtain the name and contact information for the driver of the motor vehicle in addition to noting the make, model, color, and license number of the vehicle.
- Ask witnesses for contact information. If any witnesses are present, ask for their names and contact information. Your attorney will want to take a statement as soon as possible before memories fade and facts are forgotten.
- Take pictures. If possible, take pictures of the accident scene or ask someone to take pictures for you.
- Retain the evidence. Preserve your bicycles, clothing, and safety equipment. Your attorney may need these items as evidence in your personal injury claim.
- Keep copies of all documents. Retain copies of all documents related to the accident including receipts for any out-of-pocket expenses you incur related to the bicycle crash.
- Do not discuss your case with the insurance company for the driver. It is never wise to provide a written or recorded statement, sign a release, or discuss your claim with the insurance company before you consult with a bicycle accidents attorney. The insurance company does not have your best interest as its priority.
Experienced Bicycle Accidents Attorneys in Boca Raton, FL
The bicycle accidents lawyers of The Broderick Law Firm, P.L. have the experience, knowledge, and skill you need to protect your legal rights in a car-bicycle collision.