Santa Ana Bicycle Accident Attorneys
Thousands of workers in Santa Ana use bicycles as a means of transportation to get to and from their jobs or to get around. While bicycle riding can be fun as a form of exercise or economical in terms of saving money on gas, it can also be dangerous in a bustling city such as Santa Ana. The city, which is the seat of county government, has a number of busy roadways and intersections, which makes bicycle riding tricky. A number of bicycle accidents in Santa Ana are caused by negligent drivers who are drunk, distracted, speeding or simply inattentive.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol's 2009 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were two fatalities and 131 injuries involving bicycle accidents in Santa Ana. In Orange County as a whole, 12 people died and 1,199 were injured as a result of bicycle accidents during the same year.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents
There are a number of reasons why bicycle accidents occur in Santa Ana. However, the most common causes are as follows:
Impaired driving: Drivers who operate their vehicles under the influence of alcohol or drugs put others on the roadway in great danger. When drivers are under the influence, it is common for them not to notice pedestrians or bicyclists on the roadway.
Distracted driving: When drivers choose to talk on a hand-held cell phone or text while driving, there is an increased risk of them swerving into a bicyclist and causing a serious injury accident. There have also been cases where distracted or inattentive motorists have swerved into bike lanes and struck bicyclists.
Failure to yield: Under California law, bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers of other vehicles. This means that bicyclists are required to yield the right-of-way to other vehicles when appropriate and other drivers are required to yield the right-of-way to bicyclists when appropriate. But, often, motorists do not consciously look out for bicyclists when they make a turn at a street intersection or when they pull out of a driveway or parking lot. Such acts of negligence can result in major injuries or even death for the bicyclists.
Dangerous roadways: A roadway can become really dangerous for bicyclists when they lack visibility due to poor design. Defective roadways such as streets ridden with potholes can also pose a significant danger to bicyclists. If a bicycle accident is caused by a dangerous or defective roadway, the city or governmental agency responsible for maintaining the roadway can be held liable for the bicyclist's injuries and damages.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim Against a Governmental Agency
Under California Government Code Section 911.2, any personal injury or wrongful death claim against a governmental agency must be filed within 180 days of the incident.
Bicycle Accident Wrongful Death
When a bicyclist is killed as a result of negligence or wrongdoing, the family of the deceased victim can file what is known as a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party. In such cases, immediate family members can seek compensation for damages including medical and funeral costs, lost future income and benefits and loss of love, care and companionship. A wrongful death case is a civil action and is different from any criminal proceedings that may occur in connection with the incident. For example, if the at-fault driver is facing manslaughter charges, a conviction on those criminal charges does not guarantee monetary compensation for the victim's family. They may only obtain compensation by filing a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party in a civil court.
How a Bicycle Accident Attorney Can Help
The experienced Santa Ana bicycle accident attorneys at Bisnar | Chase have a long and successful track record of securing compensation for injured victims and their families. We will remain on your side, fight for your rights and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.
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