Bicycling has become an increasingly popular method of transportation in Chicago over the past 20 years, with as many as 15,000 people riding their bikes to work each day. While the city seeks to improve bicycle lanes and overall bike safety on its roads, bicycle accidents are still a major concern.
In just a five year period, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) reported almost 9,000 injury crashes involving bicyclists in Chicago. Indeed, even as fatalities appear to be on the decline, injury crashes continue to plague the city.
If you or a loved one was injured in a bicycle or pedestrian accident, a Chicago bicycle accident attorney may be able to help. While bicyclists and pedestrians should act with great caution and follow all traffic laws, drivers of motor vehicles also have a responsibility to keep the streets of Chicago safe for all its users. In many bicycle accidents, a 2012 study by IDOT found that the most common cause of bicycle crash injuries was motorists failing to yield.
When a negligent driver causes a bicycle or pedestrian accident, The Paul Powell Law Firm works hard to get injured parties the compensation they deserve. Contact us today and we will connect you with a Chicago bicycle accident attorney to go over the details of your case, develop a winning strategy, and get you on the path towards recovery.
What Should I Do After an Accident?
Here are a few suggestions on what a bicyclist or pedestrian involved in an accident with a motor vehicle or another bicyclist should do:
- Everyone involved in the accident should remain at the accident scene. Anyone who leaves the scene of the accident can end up facing a hit-and-run criminal charge.
- Anyone who is injured should seek medical help immediately. This may include calling 911 for yourself or another person. Most importantly, anyone injured should see a doctor after an accident even if you do not think you’ve been injured seriously, as injuries can sometimes take hours, days, or even weeks to cause symptoms.
- If the accident results in bodily injury, death, or more than $1,500 in damage, it is required by law to report the accident to the Chicago Police Department. It is also required to report the accident to IDOT within 10 days of the incident.
- If possible, preserve the accident scene or take photographs, as these may be used as evidence against the negligent party.
- Gather contact information from all involved parties including drivers license, address, insurance info, and license plate. It may be wise to get this info from witnesses, too.
- Do not make any statements accepting blame for the accident.
- When responding officers arrive, they may ask you for a statement. Document the names of any responding officers so that you may obtain a copy of the police report if necessary.
- You can and should request that the driver at fault be ticketed for the accident.
After notifying the authorities and receiving appropriate medical care for your injuries, it may be in your best interest to contact a Chicago bicycle accident attorney. Illinois is a fault state for car accidents, meaning the negligent party’s insurance is responsible for compensating those injured as a result of the accident.
While this may cover some of your medical bills, if you are seriously injured or are seeking compensation for additional damages such as lost wages or emotional trauma, a Chicago bicycle accident attorney from The Paul Powell Law Firm can help ensure that the responsible driver and their insurance company don’t take advantage of you.
What Compensations Am I Entitled To?
The amount and type of compensation to which you may be entitled will depend on the extent of your injuries and whether or not you may have been at partial fault for the accident. Like drivers, bicyclists and pedestrians are also responsible for obeying traffic laws.
The most common bicyclist error which results in an injury crash is riding against traffic. If you were injured by another vehicle due to your own negligence or reckless behavior, your claim may not stand up in court. If you and the driver are both determined to be partially at fault, you may still receive damages in a smaller dollar amount.
Damages for bicycle and pedestrian accidents include:
- Hospital/Medical Bills
- Loss of Income
- Pain and Suffering
- Quality of Life Reduction
- Emotional Distress
Damages for bicycle and pedestrian accidents resulting in severe or permanently debilitating injuries may also include:
- Nursing Home Expenses
- Disability Accommodation
- Ongoing Physical Therapy
A Chicago bicycle accident attorney or pedestrian injury lawyer can review all the details of your case, including calculating the total cost of your economic and non-economic damages. The Paul Powell Law Firm will fight for your right to fair compensation.
Contact a Chicago Bicycle Accident Attorney
For help getting the maximum compensation for you injuries, call The Paul Powell Law Firm. Our lawyers are committed to holding drivers responsible for their negligence or recklessness. Over the past 17 years, Paul Powell has recovered total settlements approaching $250 million. More than 75 of those cases involved amounts exceeding $1 million.
Many of these court victories were on behalf of bicycle or pedestrian accident victims and their families. If you’ve been injured in one of these types of accidents, let the caring professionals at The Paul Powell Law Firm handle the legal battle while you focus on recovery. Call us at 312-635-5400, chat with one of our representatives online, or submit a free case evaluation 24/7.