Commuter Bicycle Accidents
Driving and parking or taking the T into Boston can frustration, not to mention costly. To avoid the hassle and expense, many people commute on their bicycles. As Boston’s network of bicycle paths and dedicated bicycle lanes grow, riding a bicycle is a great option to get around the city. While cycling has both health and financial benefits, it is not without risk. Hundreds of bicyclists are injured each year in accidents caused by careless drivers in and around Boston. Commuter bicycle accidents can cause severe injuries that are costly to treat and result in lifelong impairments. The driver who cased the accident should be held accountable for the damages they have caused a person on a bicycle. If you were injured while commuting, the skillful Boston bicycle accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC, can help you recover for your medical bills, lost income, property damage and even, in many cases, for your pain and suffered. With over 45 years representing cyclists in Boston, we can help seek justice vigorously pursuing the results that you deserve.Common Causes of Commuter Bicycle Accidents
Massachusetts has enacted laws that aim to protect bicyclists, including M.G.L. c. 90 §14. For example, people exiting cars need to check for bicyclists prior to opening their doors and requiring drivers to pass cyclists as a safe distance. Additionally, turning drivers who pass a bicyclist traveling in the same direction must make sure that they have sufficient clearance before making a right turn, and drivers turning left at an intersection must yield the right of way to any oncoming bicycles. Drivers must also slow down to a reasonable speed when approaching or passing a bicyclist on the road. Unfortunately, however, not all drivers abide by the law, and this often results in collisions. Additionally, many accidents arise out of the fact that some drivers fail to look out for bicyclists, until it is too late,Establishing Liability for Commuter Bicycle Accidents
In general, commuter bicycle accidents are caused by inattentive or careless drivers. As a result, most people who pursue compensation for harm caused by a commuter bicycle accident will allege that the driver who caused the accident should be held liable under a theory of negligence. A plaintiff alleging negligence must demonstrate that the defendant had a duty to exercise reasonable care to prevent foreseeable harm and that the defendant failed to comply with the duty by acting in a careless manner. For example, if a defendant caused a collision by following a bicyclist too closely, this may constitute a breach of the duty to drive in a safe manner. The plaintiff must also show that the breach proximately caused the plaintiff’s harm. In other words, the plaintiff must show that breach was significant factor in bringing about the injuries.
In many instances, a defendant in a bicycle accident case will argue that the accident was the bicyclist’s fault. Under Massachusetts law, however, even if a plaintiff is partially to blame for an accident, he or she may still recover damages unless the plaintiff’s fault exceeds the fault of the defendant.Damages Recoverable in a Bicycle Accident Lawsuit
Generally, the damages awarded in a lawsuit arising out of a commuter bicycle accident are meant to compensate the plaintiff for both the financial losses caused by the accident and for the intangible harm that the plaintiff suffered. Thus, a plaintiff in a bicycle accident case may be able to recover the cost of any medical treatment needed for the injuries caused by the accident, as well as the cost of any medical treatment that he or she is reasonably expected to need in the future. If the plaintiff could not work because of his or her injuries, he or she also may be able to recover compensation for lost earnings.
The bike attorneys know what your bicycle means to you. With a former bicycle mechanic on staff, we understand the complexity and value of bicycles, both new and vintage. An injured cyclist can recover for the repair or replacement cost of their bicycle, the damage to their helmet, kit and accessories.
While financial losses caused by an accident may be easily quantified, intangible harm, such as suffering, pain, and mental anguish, does not have a defined monetary value. Thus, damages awarded for such harm are typically based on the testimony of the plaintiff and his or her loved ones regarding the effects of the accident.Discuss Your Accident with a Boston Attorney
Many people throughout the Boston area choose to forego driving and commute to and from work by bicycle, but drivers often do not grant bicyclists the respect (and road space) to which they are entitled, which in many cases leads to catastrophic accidents. The personal injury lawyers at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC, are dedicated to helping cyclists injured by someone else’s negligence pursue the full amount of compensation recoverable under the law. We regularly represent people in personal injury lawsuits in Boston and elsewhere in Suffolk, Middlesex, Norfolk, Bristol, Plymouth, Essex, and Worcester Counties. You can contact us via our form online or at (617) 367-2900 to schedule a meeting with one of the bicycle attorneys today.