What Are Some Common Bicycle Accident Injuries in Virginia?

If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident, we’re here for you. Call CAIL today and speak with a bicycle accident attorney in Richmond.

Bicycle accidents are unique since they result in injuries that are considerably different from those associated with truck or car accidents. Bicycle accident victims face many different risks that other motorists don’t, such as open exposure to the road and other objects. This often leads to injuries that are almost exclusive to bicycle accidents. Knowing about these possible injuries can help you as a victim.

Physical Injuries

Accidents that involve a bicycle being forced to the ground by either a vehicle or some other object will come with some common injuries. Once the body strikes the ground, it may result in spinal cord injuries, wrist bone fractures, as well as brain/head injuries. Blunt force trauma to various parts of the body can be disastrous.

Here are common injuries associated with bicyclists striking the windshield, ground, or other objects in an accident:

  • Bone Fractures
  • Ruptured Discs
  • Spine Injuries
  • Neurological Damage
  • Facial Injuries
  • Head Trauma
  • Wrongful Death

If a vehicle hits a bicyclist and subsequently rolls over them, it may lead to internal damage, crush injuries, broken bones, and even death. Head injuries are some of the most common injuries in bicycle accidents. A few jurisdictions in Virginia require persons 14 years of age or younger to wear a helmet while on a bicycle on a highway, sidewalk, or public cycling path. Because these laws only pertain to certain areas and only to young people, you will find many people biking in and around the cities without any head protection. While a helmet alone cannot guarantee the prevention of head injuries, it significantly lowers the risk. Even while wearing a helmet, bicyclists may still suffer traumatic injuries to the brain and head that may result in a coma, brain damage, or even death.

Emotional Trauma

The emotional trauma that’s associated with a bicycle accident is often extensive. Cyclists usually feel too afraid to return to riding after being involved in an accident. They often suffer from psychological issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder that may require therapy or even medication. Injured cyclists may also suffer from insomnia, nightmares, mental anguish, depression, anxiety, and other kinds of emotional distress. Under Nevada law, this kind of trauma is compensable, just like physical injuries.

If a cyclist suffers a traumatic brain injury, the resulting emotional trauma can be incredibly severe. Brain injuries may result in memory loss, cognitive difficulties, confusion, and motor function impairments. Brain injury survivors may no longer be the same. The courts may also recompense damages such as loss of quality or enjoyment of life in a personal injury claim. The value of such damages largely depends on the extent of the impact on the victim’s life, the age of the victim, and several other factors.

Safety Tips for Avoiding Bicycle Accidents

To prevent bicycle accidents and associated injuries, there are some safety tips to observe while riding:

– The bicycle should be the right size for the rider.

– A federally-approved bicycle helmet should be worn while riding a bicycle. According to a study, riders who don’t wear helmets were found to be 14 times more likely to sustain fatal head injuries than those wearing head protection.

– Riders are required to follow the traffic rules and laws just like other road users. They are required to stop at red lights, ride with the traffic flow, and not ride on the walkway.

– Residential areas are preferable for riding compared to congested streets and highways.

– Riders should wear bright clothing to make themselves visible to other road users, especially at night. The bicycles should also be fitted with reflectors to allow other road users to see them better.

– Riders should always check the brakes and reflectors before riding to ensure that they are working properly.

– Riders are required to maintain a safe distance from parked vehicles to avoid being struck by doors that may open.

– Riders should get off their bikes when crossing a pedestrian lane. In case of an accident involving a vehicle, the driver is usually held liable for the rider’s injuries only if the rider got off of the bike.

– Riders are strongly discouraged from listening to portable music players when riding since this may prevent them from hearing their surroundings. Traffic safety experts advise bicycle riders, just like the rest of the road users, to have complete focus on the road.

– Riders are required to respect pedestrians’ right of way.

– Riders should base their speed on the volume of traffic and road conditions.

– It is important for riders to be particularly careful when crossing intersections.

– Riders should use the entire lane as opposed to the edge of a street to ensure that they are visible and predictable in the eyes of other road users.

– Riders should be particularly careful when there’s a passing bus or truck that has a larger blind spot compared to a passenger vehicle.

Contact a Bicycle Accident Attorney in Richmond, Virginia

Even a seemingly minor bicycle accident can put victims through a lot of pain and suffering. Chipped teeth, road rash, lacerations to the face, and scars can all occur in accidents deemed “minor” under the law. Major accidents may lead to permanent injuries, disability, or even death. 

If you or a loved one has been involved in any type of bicycle accident, be sure to consult with a bicycle accident attorney in Richmond at CAIL. You may be eligible for compensation for your emotional suffering, physical injuries, or even financial losses through the driver’s insurance provider or another party.

Contact CAIL today and schedule a free consultation.