Fort Lauderdale is one of the most well-known cities in Florida. Beautiful beaches, vibrant attractions, and premier restaurants are just a few of the many things in Fort Lauderdale that influence tourists from all over the world to visit our city. However, as many Fort Lauderdale residents know, the influx of visitors combined with the growing number of residents in Fort Lauderdale cause the roads in our city to be a dangerous place to drive and to ride a bicycle.
In fact, there were an estimated 41,755 car accidents, which includes accidents involving a bicyclist, in Broward County alone in 2016. These accidents resulted in over 25 thousand injuries across the county and an estimated 245 fatalities. Moreover, there were 6,668 bicycle accidents that occurred throughout the state of Florida during the same period resulting in 6,234 injuries. Bicycle accidents in Fort Lauderdale and the state of Florida are a problem that is getting worse each year, which is why you should always contact a bicycle accident attorney in Fort Lauderdale if you are bicyclist who has been involved in a car accident.
Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), fatal and non-fatal bicycle accident injuries sustained by accident victims across the United States cost our country roughly 10 billion dollars in lifetime medical costs and productivity losses. The reason these costs are incurred by accident victims and our country is simple. Bicyclists involved in car accidents sustain injuries at a very high rate. As such, there are certain common injuries that each bicyclist should be aware of.
- Bulging or Herniated Discs: When a car hits a bicyclist, the bicyclists’ spine sustains a severe trauma. When this occurs, the discs in between the vertebrae of the accident victim’s spine can either rupture, which is referred to as a herniation, or become irritated, inflamed, and swollen, which is referred to as a disc bulge. Often, an accident victim with a herniated or bulging disc(s) will not feel the full extent of their injuries until a few days after the accident. Common symptoms associated with a herniated or bulging disc injury are numbness, tingling, arm and leg pain, and muscle weakness.
- Concussions: Similar to herniated discs, the impact of the car hitting a bicyclist can cause the accident victim to sustain a sudden blow to their skull. This blow can cause a temporary interruption in normal brain functioning thereby causing the accident victim to sustain a mild traumatic brain injury, which is more commonly known as a concussion. Typical concussion-related symptoms include headaches, irritability, problems sleeping, and issues with focus and cognitive functioning.
- Broken Rib(s): Bicycle accidents often lead to a bicyclist being propelled in the air from their bike due to the impact of the driver hitting them or going through the windshield of the motorists car. This can cause a bicyclist to break or fracture their ribs as a result of the accident. Most people who break or fracture even one rib feel the pain associated with this type of injury immediately. Pain is the main symptom associated with this type of injury. Simple activities such as laughing, coughing, or even breathing can cause a bicyclist with a broken rib to experience pain.
Common Questions after being Involved in a Bicycle Accident
Should I get Evaluated by a Doctor?
Yes, roughly 93% of bicycle accidents that occurred in the state of Florida resulted in 2016 resulted in injuries. As such, you should always get evaluated by a doctor after being involved in a bicycle accident.
Should I Call the Police, even if the Accident was Minor?
Yes, even minor bicycle accidents can cause an accident victim to sustain injuries. As such, calling the police allows you to protect your legal interests by ensuring that the accident is documented, the motorists provide you with their insurance information, and any individual(s) who witnessed the accident occur are identified.
How Long do I have to File a Claim?
Four years from the date the accident occurs. Florida has a four-year statute of limitations for car accident claims, under Fla.Stat.§95.11(3)(a). However, most bicycle accident attorneys will tell you that you should file a claim as soon as possible, because as more time passes, bicycle accident cases become more and more difficult to successfully prove.
How Much is my Case Worth?
The value of each bicycle accident claim will vary depending on how the accident occurred, the severity of your injuries, and the ultimate effect those injuries will have on your life in the future. As such, an appropriate value for your case cannot be calculated until the full extent of the medical care needed to treat your injuries has been determined, and as a general rule, damages in a bicycle accident claim, which are ultimately used to justify a claim’s value, should only be calculated with the assistance of a bicycle accident attorney.
Should I Hire a Bicycle Accident Attorney?
Accident victims hire bicycle accident attorneys for a host of different reasons the most common of which is the sheer complexity of the legal system itself. Bicycle accident attorneys spend years studying, applying, and practicing law. As such, a bicycle accident attorney’s overall knowledge of the legal system is much more extensive than the average person’s understanding of the legal system and how it operates. So, although no one is forced to hire an attorney to represent them in any criminal or civil proceeding, hiring a bicycle accident attorney to represent you can increase the likelihood that your case will be brought to a successful conclusion in most instances.
Connect with a Fort Lauderdale Bicycle Accident Attorney Today
The good news is, most bicycle accident attorneys will evaluate your case for free, so at a minimum, you can at least find out what your legal rights are in your unique scenario even if you ultimately decide not to hire an attorney to represent you. 1800-Injured is a lawyer and medical referral service that connects accident victims with bicycle accident attorneys in the Fort Lauderdale area. If you have been involved in a bicycle accident, call 1-800-Injured today to be connected with a bicycle accident attorney near you.