Throughout Kansas City, it’s not uncommon to see children and adults alike riding bicycles for leisure and as a means of transportation. Riding a bike can be a fun, convenient, and relatively cheap way to get around the city. However, despite the thrill of the ride, the fact remains that riding a bicycle still comes with an inherent risk of accident and injury. A report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that over 800 bicyclist fatalities occurred in 2018 due to motor vehicle crashes. Bicycle accidents may lead to serious injury, permanent damage, and even fatalities.
If you have suffered injuries or lost loved ones in a Kansas City bicycle accident, you may consider filing a claim to pursue compensation for the consequent damage and suffering. At Goza & Honnold, our experienced Kansas City bicycle accident lawyers are dedicated to helping our clients recover the costs of damages, pain and suffering, and other factors of compensation resulting from someone else’s negligent actions.
Understanding Kansas City’s Bicycle Laws
In Kansas City, bicyclists have a series of rules and regulations they must follow. Likewise, other vehicles on the road—such as cars, trucks, and motorcycles—must follow their own set of guidelines. If these parties fail to follow these regulations leading to an accident, they may be held negligent for any injuries or damages that occur.
Kansas bicycle statutes permit bicyclists on roadways under these rules and regulations:
- A person propelling a bicycle is to sit on a permanent and regular seat that is attached to the bike.
- No more than the allowable number of persons at one time is riding the bicycle, according to the design and equipment of the bicycle.
- No bicyclists are permitted to cling to motor vehicles while riding.
- While cycling on a roadway at a speed less than the normal traffic limit, bicyclists should ride on the right side of the roadway except when overtaking and passing another bike, making a left turn at an intersection or private road, or in any necessary case to avoid parked or moving hazards.
- When a bicycle lane is present, cyclists must use it instead of the road.
Sharing the road with other vehicles can be dangerous when drivers are distracted, under the influence, or are otherwise negligent while operating a vehicle. In Kansas City, traffic control signals and right-of-way regulations help pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers gauge when to yield to others on the road. These standards must be followed.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
The most common type of bicycle accident involves a vehicle hitting a bicyclist. If a driver does not yield, serious accidents may occur. When vehicles collide with cyclists, the impact directly to the victims’ bodies may cause severe injuries such as broken bones or brain and spinal trauma. The most common causes of car and bicycle collisions include:
- Distracted driving
- Failing to yield to the right of way
- Low visibility
- Dangerous road or weather conditions
- Drunk driving
Bicyclists are not as visible on roadways as trucks, cars, and other larger vehicles. As a result, drivers need to be extra cautious when driving alongside bicyclists. Switching lanes without looking, driving distracted, or reckless behavior can cause serious injury to cyclists.
What Kind of Injuries Are Sustained in Bicycle Accidents?
Because bicycles lack the protection offered in other vehicles such as airbags, steel frames, and crumple zones, bicycle accidents often cause a great deal of pain and suffering while also creating significant financial difficulties for victims and their families. Different types of injuries can be inflicted on a bicyclist, whether in an accident caused by a car, pedestrian, or other riders. Some of the most common types of injuries sustained in bicycle accidents include:
- Broken or fractured bones
- Bruises, cuts, road rash
- Concussions, spinal cord damage, and brain injury
- Catastrophic or permanent damage and injury
- Other short and long-term injuries
- Wrongful death
After an accident, injured bicyclists should seek immediate medical attention, regardless of whether they were wearing a helmet, pads, or other protective equipment. Accidents occur very quickly, and the extent of your injuries may not be present right away. Securing a thorough medical evaluation right away and seeking an attorney who can help you file a claim increases the likelihood of successfully obtaining the compensation owed to you because of the accident.
Does Wearing Protective Gear Guard a Cyclist From Sustaining Injuries?
Wearing protective gear while riding a bicycle has proven effective in protecting many people from head injuries when involved in an accident. While it’s not illegal to ride a bicycle in Kansas without a helmet or protective gear, it is highly recommended by medical professionals in order to avoid serious injury or death.
Pursuing Compensation After an Accident in Kansas City
When you have suffered a traumatic accident or have a loved one who was killed due to another’s negligence, you may have the right to seek compensation. The process may be stressful and troubling, but an experienced Kansas City bicycle accident lawyer can help you by pursuing any and all necessary legal action on your behalf.
The attorneys at Goza & Honnold are dedicated to helping injured individuals in the Kansas City community and are standing by to review your bicycle accident case.
Call Goza & Honnold to Seek Professional Legal Support After a Kansas City Bicycle Accident
Suffering an injury from any type of accident can lead to serious life changes and challenges. In the case of bicycle accidents, an injured cyclist may need life-saving intervention and additional support from sustaining a bodily injury after colliding with a car. The effects may last for years after an initial accident. If you have been involved in a Kansas City bicycle accident or have lost a loved one due to a driver’s negligent acts, our bicycle accident lawyers may be able to help. Complete our contact form or give us a call at (913) 451-3433 to schedule a free consultation today.