Bicycle Accident Lawyer for Riders Injured in the San Fernando Valley & Woodland Hills
Whether you commute on a bicycle to save money or help protect the environment, or you ride for exercise or pleasure, the risk of being seriously injured in a crash involving a vehicle is very real. These crashes can be devastating, resulting in severe pain, suffering, emotional trauma, and long-term or lifelong physical impairments.
While bicycle riders have many of the same rights as drivers on California’s roads, you wouldn’t know it from the way most people drive. From running cyclists off of the road to plowing through intersections without the right of way, drivers routinely make negligent and aggressive driving mistakes that lead to dangerous – and sometimes deadly – collisions with law-abiding cyclists.
If you were injured in an accident involving a motor vehicle, there is a good chance that you are entitled to financial compensation. Bicycle riders’ losses are often substantial, and in most cases securing just compensation is the only way for riders to make a full recovery. Having represented numerous cyclists injured in accidents throughout Southern California, we know. We know what it means to lose the ability to ride, and we know how riders’ lives can change for the better when they win the compensation they deserve.
Barry P. Goldberg, A Professional Law Corporation is a law firm that is dedicated exclusively to representing accident victims in the San Fernando Valley & Woodland Hills. Attorney Barry Goldberg routinely represents injured cyclists, and he has a proven track record of quickly securing just compensation even in the most complex and difficult cases. Mr. Goldberg has studied the unique dynamics involved in accidents involving both road bikes and mountain bikes, and he relies on more than 30 years’ legal experience to pursue aggressive case strategies designed to maximize his clients’ financial recoveries.
Here is what clients say about working with Mr. Goldberg and the professional staff at Barry P. Goldberg, A Professional Law Corporation:
“Really appreciate the legal guidance I received from Mr. Goldberg. I did not feel my insurance company had my best interest[s] in mind and I reached out for legal coun[sel]. It was clear Mr. Goldberg was an expert not only in personal injury cases but the use of Facebook posts and Tweets as evidence. I will definitely work with Mr. Goldberg again in the future and will recommend him to my family and friends.”
“Thank you so much for everything you did for me on my case—all the hard work, support and all your efforts. You were there for me during a difficult time in my life. It means more than you will ever know.”
Common Factors in Bicycle-Motor Vehicle Accidents
Most cyclists ride defensively in traffic – they have to. With vehicles weighing several tons traveling many times their speed just feet away, cyclists have little choice but to adhere to good safety practices and follow the rules of the road. Unfortunately, oftentimes, this simply is not enough. Safe bicycle riders regularly suffer serious and catastrophic injuries in accidents caused by:
- Aggressive Driving – From exceeding the speed limit to running red lights and stop signs, vehicle owners who drive aggressively are hazards to cyclists and everyone else on the road. For some reason, many drivers also have a tendency to get angry at cyclists, and may even actively take out their anger, resulting in a reckless and dangerous accident.
- Distracted Driving – These days, distracted driving has become so commonplace that we consider it as a possible factor in almost every accident. While driving distractions used to be limited to eating, drinking, looking at maps, and adjusting the radio dial, today drivers are texting, sending emails, typing in GPS directions, posting to social media, and even watching videos behind the wheel.
- Drunk Driving – Drunk driving continues to be a persistent problem in Southern California, and bicycle riders can face extreme dangers when approached by intoxicated drivers. The impairments caused by even a small amount of alcohol consumption are enough to multiply drivers’ chances of causing a bicycle accident several times over.
- Fatigued Driving – Studies have shown that fatigue can cause driving impairments on par with those of alcohol consumption. Fatigued drivers are less likely to see cyclists on the side of the road, they are less likely to brake in time to avoid hitting cyclists once they see them, and they deserve to be held financially accountable for the consequences of deciding to drive while not in a condition to do so.
- Inattentive Driving – In some cases, drivers are not necessary aggressive, distracted, or impaired, but rather are simply inattentive behind the wheel. Despite the prevalence of bicycles on Southern California’s roads, it is not uncommon for a driver who hits a cyclist to say, “I just didn’t see that she was there.”
- Bicycle Defects – If your bicycle is unsafe, there may be nothing you can do to avoid a sudden and unexpected accident. As a rider, you trust your bicycle to do what it is supposed to, and defective components and accessories can leave you helpless to avoid a dangerous situation.
Regardless of what happened, if you were involved in an accident with a motor vehicle, we encourage you to give us a call. We can act quickly to investigate and determine the cause of the accident, and Mr. Goldberg will be happy to provide a free assessment of your legal rights.
Bicycle-Motor Vehicle Accidents in California: Legal FAQs
Q: How can bicyclists reduce their chances of being seriously injured in an accident?
In most bicycle accident cases, one of the defense’s key arguments against liability will be to accuse the rider of being to blame for his or her own injuries. When we know this is coming, we collect evidence to prove that our client was riding safely and observing the rules of the road at the time of the collision. Some of the best ways to show that riders do not share in the liability for their injuries include:
- Showing that they were riding as far right as possible against oncoming traffic.
- Showing that they were wearing a helmet at the time of the accident.
- Showing that they were making themselves visible to passing motorists.
- Showing that their bicycles were well-maintained and in good working order.
In addition, California has recently enacted a “3 feet” rule requiring drivers to maintain at least 3 feet of clearance between a vehicle and a bicycle or it is a violation. The purpose of this law was put into effect to ensure the safety of bicyclists and will reduce the chances of them being injured in an accident.
Q: What if I was injured in an accident and a vehicle driver wasn’t to blame?
The only way to know who was at fault in an accident is by conducting a thorough investigation and careful legal analysis. So, at this point, you should not be making any assumptions about who was at fault or what went wrong. But, assuming your accident was not the result of driver negligence, there are still a number of other potential causes that could entitle you to financial compensation. These include:
- Bicycle defects (such as faulty suspension components, brake cables and calipers, frame welds, and inner tubes)
- Unsafe conditions on public property (such as potholes or other road defects)
- Unsafe conditions on private property (such as greenery obscuring road signs or blind corners)
Q: What if the driver who hit me was uninsured?
If the driver who hit you was uninsured, once again, you may still have a few different sources of compensation available. For example, even if the driver who hit you was at fault, this does not necessarily mean that he or she was the only cause of your accident. A bicycle defect or property-related issue could be to blame as well.
In addition, if you have uninsured/underinsured (UIM) coverage under your auto insurance policy, you may be able to collect compensation through your insurer. UIM policies apply to bicycle accidents, and they can provide much-needed coverage when coverage from an at-fault driver is unavailable.
Q: What if I was injured in a hit-and-run accident?
We handle hit-and-run accidents in much the same way that we handle accidents involving uninsured motorists. When you choose us to handle your case, we will look for any other possible sources of compensation and, if it is available, pursue coverage under your UIM policy.
Why Do Bicycle Riders in the San Fernando Valley & Woodland Hills Trust Barry P. Goldberg?
With decades of experience, attorney Barry P. Goldberg has proven himself time and time again as an effective advocate for accident victims and their families. While our firm’s success is due in large part to Mr. Goldberg’s ability to skillfully identify sources of liability and pursue innovative case strategies, we also owe a debt of gratitude to our clients. So, why do clients choose to bring their cases to Barry P. Goldberg, A Professional Law Corporation?
- Decades of experience in personal representation.
- Prestigious awards and top ratings from clients and peers.
- Proven results in settlement negotiations and at trial.
- Attention to detail focused on maximizing our clients’ financial recoveries.
- Client-first representation and an unwavering commitment to success.
If you want a bike accident lawyer who will do what it takes to win the compensation you deserve, contact us to discuss your case with Mr. Goldberg in confidence. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, call us at (818) 222-6994 or get in touch online today.