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Law Offices of Fernando Vargas
Law Offices of Fernando Vargas

Bicycle Accident Trial Lawyer

Bicycle Accident Trial LawyerRiding a bicycle is something thousands of people do every day. Some use it as a form of exercise, some ride as a mode of transportation to and from school or work, and children use it for play. On any given day, you can see individuals, couples, and families riding bicycles. However, what can start out as a fun outing with friends or families can soon take a tragic turn. The risk of being seriously injured or killed while bicycling is a very real problem in our society today.

According to the United States Department of Transportation National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 743 pedalcyclists (riders of non-motorized bicycles, tricycles, and unicycles powered solely by pedals) were killed and another 48,000 were injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2013.

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a bicycle accident, it is important that you choose an attorney who thoroughly understands California’s laws and statutes regarding bicycle accidents. California Bicycle Accident Lawyer Fernando D. Vargas is an experienced trial lawyer who, since 1987, has effectively litigated thousands of personal injury cases including claims involving bicycle accidents throughout the counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Orange, with an emphasis in the cities of Pomona, Rancho Cucamonga, Claremont, Montclair, Upland, Ontario, Chino, Fontana, Riverside, and San Bernardino. The Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, which is located in the city of Rancho Cucamonga, has recovered millions of dollars in personal injury verdicts and settlements for their clients.

Bicycle Accidents in California

Bicycle Accidents in California

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 141 bicyclists were killed in California in 2013, and many, many more were injured. Although some bicycle accidents are caused by the bicyclist’s own behavior, other bicycle accidents are caused by other motorist’s negligence. Some of the ways drivers of cars and trucks are negligent in causing bicycle accidents include:

  • Failing to pay adequate attention to their surroundings;
  • Failing to respect the rights of bicyclists;
  • Failing to look for bicyclists before making moves that can endanger a bicyclist’s life;
  • Failing to check their blind spot before changing lanes;
  • Making right turns directly in front of an oncoming bicyclist;
  • Driving too close to the bicyclist;
  • Sideswiping a bicyclist when passing;
  • Opening doors in front of a bicyclist;
  • Backing out of a driveway in front of an oncoming bicyclist
  •  Failing to stop at stop signs or red traffic lights;
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

Common Bicycle Accident Injuries

Bicycle accidents involving a motor vehicle can result in serious and life-threatening injuries, including:

  • Facial injuries
  • Head injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Paralysis
  • Paraplegia and Quadriplegia
  • Fractures
  • Loss of a limb, hand, or foot
  • Disfigurement, scarring, and road rash
  • Death

These injuries can be catastrophic and life changing for the bicyclist and his/her family. That is why it is so important that you hire an experienced California Bicycle Accident Attorney who understands California’s laws and has the expertise and skill necessary to protect your legal rights.


What are the Rules for Bicyclist in California

What are the Rules for Bicyclists in California?

According to the CDMV, bicyclists are entitled to share the road with motor vehicles and have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers of motor vehicles and motorcycles. Further, the CDMV lists these additional requirements of bicyclists:

  • Must obey all traffic signals and stop signs.
  • Are lawfully permitted to ride on certain sections of roadway in rural areas where there is no alternate route.
  • Must ride in the same direction as other traffic, not against it.
  • Shall ride as near to the right curb or edge of the roadway as practical – not on the sidewalk.
  • Are legally allowed to ride in the center of the lane when moving at the same speed as other traffic.
  • May move left to pass a parked or moving vehicle, bicycle, animal, or avoid debris or other hazards.
  • May choose to ride near the left curb or edge of a one-way street.
  • Should ride single file on a busy or narrow street.
  • Must make left and right turns in the same way drivers do, using the same turn lanes. If the bicyclist is traveling straight ahead, he or she should use a through traffic lane rather than ride next to the curb and block traffic making right turns.
  • Must signal all their intentions to motorists and bicyclists near them.
  • Must wear a helmet if under the age of 18.
  • Should carry identification.
  • Shall not operate a bicycle on a roadway unless the bicycle is equipped with a brake, which will enable the operator to make one braked wheel skid on dry, level, clean pavement.

During darkness, the CDMV further requires that bicyclists must have the following 
equipment:

  • A front lamp emitting a white light visible from a distance of 300 feet.
  • A rear red reflector visible from a distance of 500 feet.
  • A white or yellow reflector on each pedal or on the bicyclist’s shoes or ankles visible from a distance of 200 feet.

California Vehicle Code §§21200-21212 cover the rules of the road and obedience to and the effect of traffic laws for the operation of bicycles.

shutterstock_88297135Safety Equipment – Helmet

The State of California requires every person under the age of 18 who operates a bicycle, non-motorized scooter, or skateboard to wear properly fitted and fastened bicycle helmet that meets federal safety standards. If a minor child violates this requirement, the minor and his/her parents will be jointly and severally liable for the amount of any fine given for this violation.

Riding a Bicycle Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs

Just like the operation of a motor vehicle, California Vehicle Code §21200.5 makes it illegal to operate a bicycle while under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.

When should you consult a California Bicycle Accident Lawyer?

The majority of bicycle accidents involving motor vehicles are not the fault of the bicyclist. If you are involved in a bicycle accident, you should contact a California Bicycle Accident Lawyer as soon as possible. Bicyclists involved in a motor vehicle collision may be in too bad of shape to obtain the evidence necessary to prove their case. The longer you wait, the greater the risk that valuable evidence could be lost, or witnesses disappear.

The insurance company wants to settle. Do I need a lawyer?

The other driver’s insurance company could attempt to take advantage of you by trying to get you to settle your claim for less than what you deserve. It is important to remember that insurance companies, even your own, care only about saving their company as much money as possible. The insurance company’s goal is to settle your claim as quickly as possible for a little as possible. Therefore, it is extremely important that you not accept any settlement offers before speaking with a California Bicycle Accident Attorney.

Selecting the right bicycle accident lawyer is an important decision. If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident, you should choose an attorney who is experienced, aggressive, and dedicated to working to get you the maximum compensation possible for all your injuries.


Who is at fault?

shutterstock_141946546Who is at fault?

If you are not at fault for your bicycle accident, you should be able to recover 100% of your economic damages plus a dollar amount to compensate you for your non-economic damages. However, the amount you will be able to recover will depend many factors and only an experienced trial lawyer can help you asses and maximize the value of your case.

To prove fault and damages, Fernando D. Vargas will thoroughly investigate your case and personally interview each witness to your accident. In addition, the Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas will hire a team of expert witnesses, which could include medical experts, economists, and accident reconstruction specialists. These experts will work diligently with Mr. Vargas to prove the cause of your bicycle accident and prove all your damages in order to obtain the maximum compensation allowed by law.


What type of compensation is recoverable in a bicycle accident case?

What type of compensation is recoverable in a bicycle accident case?

When you hire the Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, you can be confident that you are hiring a reputable and experienced California Bicycle Accident Lawyer. A bicyclist injured in a motor vehicle collision can suffer permanent and catastrophic injuries. Fernando D. Vargas has years of experience litigating personal injury claims and will work tirelessly to fight for the maximum compensation for all your injuries, including:

  • Medical bills in the past and in the future
  • Rehabilitation therapy
  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Medications
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Assistive devices and transportation
  • Loss of household services
  • Loss of parental or spousal support
  • Property loss (damage to the bicycle)
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish and emotional distress
  • Disfigurement
  • Inability to perform certain functions• Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Loss of consortium (marital support and services)
  • Funeral and burial expenses

In some cases, Fernando D. Vargas seeks punitive damages against the driver of the motor vehicle. Punitive damages are intended to punish the driver in cases where he/she acted recklessly or with wanton disregard for others.


Free Consultation!

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries from a bicycle accident due to the negligence of another, the Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas can help. Mr. Vargas has the skill, expertise, and experience necessary to successfully litigate your bicycle accident injury case.

In addition, attorney Vargas has a team of experts that will work with him to prove your injuries and damages in order to fight the insurance companies and get you the maximum compensation you deserve. During your free consultation, Mr. Vargas will personally discuss the facts of your case, review the details about your injuries, and advise you about your rights. 

Since 1987, California Bicycle Accident Attorney Fernando D. Vargas has successfully litigated thousands of personal injury accident cases including bicycle accident injury claims throughout the Inland Empire and the counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Bernardino with an emphasis in the cities of Pomona, Rancho Cucamonga, Claremont, Montclair, Upland, Ontario, Chino, Fontana, Riverside, and San Bernardino.

 

No Recovery, No Fee!

Bicycle accident injury cases can be expensive to litigate. However, the Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, which is located in the city of Rancho Cucamonga, takes all of the firm’s personal injury cases on a “contingency fee” basis. This means that you will pay nothing up front and Mr. Vargas will advance all money necessary to prepare your case for either settlement or trial. If Mr. Vargas is unsuccessful in resolving your case, you pay absolutely nothing.

The Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, which is fully staffed with bi-lingual personnel that are fluent in Spanish, has successfully championed the rights of personal injury victims by wining millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for their clients since its foundation in 1995.

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries from a bicycle accident, it is vital that you consult with a reputable and experienced California Bicycle Accident Injury Trial Lawyer. Call the Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909 / 982-0707 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. If your injuries prevent you from coming to our Rancho Cucamonga office, we can arrange to visit you at your home or the hospital to ensure the timely investigation of your claim.

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