Bicycle riding is popular in Valley Stream, New York. The Valley Stream State Park has a flat, three-mile bike trail that loops around a picturesque lake. The trail is suitable for bicyclists of all skill levels and connects with the Hendrickson Park trail for cyclists wanting to take a longer ride. Road cycling is also popular in Valley Stream. There are bike routes for a cyclist along Merrick Road, Valley Stream Boulevard, and Cornwall Avenue to navigate through Valley Stream and to explore nearby towns.
Despite the excellent benefits provided by bicycle riding, the activity also involves risk. When bicycles and motor vehicles share the road, unfortunately, accidents happen. Many are caused by inattentive or impatient motorists. Valley Stream bicycle accidents can cause severe injuries to the bicyclist, and in worst-case scenarios, death.
If you were injured in a Valley Stream bike crash, you will need an experienced Valley Stream bicycle accident attorney on your side. You may be entitled to demand compensation for the injuries that you suffered in your bicycle accident. The compensation available may include reimbursement of your medical expenses, lost wages from missed work and your pain and suffering.
The Valley Stream bike accident attorneys at Cohen & Jaffe understand the appeal of cycling and are committed to helping victims of bicycle accidents seek justice. Our attorneys know that a seriously injured cyclist faces a long road to recovery. If someone else causes the accident, you shouldn’t be stuck with the medical debt. Call the Long Island personal injury attorneys at Cohen & Jaffe to discuss your Valley Stream bicycle accident case as soon as you can. You can reach us at 516-358-6900 or online. Our initial consultation is free.
Dangers of Bicycling Alongside Motor Vehicles in Valley Stream
Cyclists face many dangers when riding alongside motor vehicles.
The average vehicle today weighs approximately 4,000 pounds and is constructed mainly of steel and aluminum. On the other hand, the average bicycle weighs approximately 25 pounds, and its rider is not protected by seat restraints, shoulder harnesses or an enclosed passenger compartment. The cyclist is completely exposed to injury in a collision.
Some of the common dangers associated with sharing the roads with motor vehicles include:
Driver Bias Accidents
Bicyclists have a right to ride on the road and are required to obey traffic signals and follow traffic safety rules just as other road users. However, most automobile drivers fail to recognize this fact. Driver bias against bicycles is a real danger of bicycling alongside motor vehicles.
Some drivers have no patience for anyone who gets in their way or moves at slower speeds than they do. These motorists may become frustrated and try to pass a bicyclist in a dangerous location. A driver who is frustrated and angry can become aggressive and subject a bicyclist to road rage. Some motorists fail to appreciate that bicyclists in Valley Stream are entitled to share the road with motor vehicles.
Right Turn Accidents
Drivers who intend to make a right turn at an intersection often fail to appreciate that there may be a bicyclist approaching the intersection on the right side of the road.
If the driver does not look for approaching bicycles before making a right turn, a serious bicycle accident can occur. The resulting injuries to the bicyclist can be more severe if the motor vehicle takes the turn at a high speed and collides with a cyclist.
Another common danger of bicycling alongside motor vehicles is the driver who fails to look before opening the door to exit the vehicle. Drivers who are parallel parked and open their door without looking for approaching traffic may cause a dooring accident. The driver may hit a passing cyclist with the swinging car door. This can cause serious injuries. A bicyclist who strikes an open door without braking may fly off their bicycle into oncoming traffic.
These types of “dooring accidents” can result in serious injuries to the cyclist, such as head trauma and broken bones. It’s not uncommon for cyclists to suffer severe injuries in a dooring accident.
Failure to Exercise Caution
An automobile driver may misjudge the approaching speed of a bicycle. For example, a motor vehicle driver may be waiting to make a left turn at an intersection. The driver may see a bicycle approaching but misjudge when the bike will reach the intersection. This can cause the bicyclist to collide with a car that turns unexpectedly in front.
Drivers often fail to exercise caution when passing a bicycle on the road. Drivers tend to speed up when passing a cyclist so that they can get by the bicycle as quickly as possible. When they misjudge the biker’s speed, a serious collision or sideswipe accident can result.
Causes of Bike Accidents in Valley Stream
Bicycle accidents occur because one or more individuals involved in the accident acted carelessly or made a judgment error, resulting in negligence.
What is negligence? In New York law, negligence is defined as the failure to exercise the same care that a reasonably prudent person would under the same circumstances.
There are many types of negligent acts that can cause a bike accident, such as the following examples:
A driver who changes lanes without looking for other vehicles or bicycles is a reckless driver. A driver who fails to obey a traffic signal or runs a stop sign acts recklessly. A reasonably prudent person would obey traffic laws and traffic signals. A driver who fails to do so is negligent under the law.
A person who drives while distracted is also negligent. Texting while driving is against the law because it is dangerous. Using a cell phone while operating a motor vehicle distracts the driver and makes the driver less likely to be aware of surrounding traffic. Distracted driving is a major cause of bicycle accidents.
Drivers who take their eyes off the road for any reason are not able to observe and keep bicyclists safe on the roads.
Fatigued drivers are another major cause of bicycle accidents in Valley Stream. Sleep-deprived drivers are more likely to overlook a cyclist on the road. Fatigued drivers exhibit impaired recognition and decision-making skills. They have slower reactions when they recognize hazardous situations. That can be a potentially deadly combination for cyclists on the road.
Poor Road Conditions
Sometimes, bicycle accidents are the result of dangerous road conditions. Potholes, construction debris, metal plates, and roadkill can cause serious injuries to a bicyclist. According to the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration, 13 percent of all injury-causing bike accidents are the result of dangerous road conditions.
A local government that is responsible for maintaining a road may be liable for an accident caused by dangerous road conditions due to lack of proper maintenance.
How a Valley Stream Bicycle Accident Attorney Can Help
If you were injured in a bicycle accident, the Valley Stream bike accident attorneys at Cohen & Jaffe will stand by your side throughout your bicycle accident claim.
The attorneys at Cohen & Jaffe have more than 100 years of collective experience representing people injured in bicycle accidents. They have obtained millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for their clients who were dealing with serious injuries.
Cohen & Jaffe is dedicated to providing their clients with individual attention. You will work directly with law partners Richard Jaffe and Stephen Cohen, not just a paralegal or office assistant. Additionally, all clients get Richard Jaffe’s cellphone number for 24/7 accessibility.
If you were a bicyclist injured by the negligence of a motor vehicle driver, contact Cohen & Jaffe. Our attorneys will help get you on the path to recovery and will fight to get you the compensation you deserve.
Call Richard Jaffe and Stephen Cohen now at 516-358-6900. All calls will be returned within 24 hours of receipt. Additionally, if you cannot make it to our office, we will make arrangements to come to you.
For a free legal consultation with a bicycle accidents lawyer serving Valley Stream, call 516-358-6900