Bicycle Accidents: The Victim May Be Considered Negligent
Bicycle cases are often not black and white when it comes to determining who was responsible. Since both the driver and bicyclist can be held negligent or contributing to the cause of the accident, the facts in each case have to be examined meticulously. For example, just because a cyclist is hit while in a crosswalk does not automatically mean that the driver was 100 percent at fault. You need to know where the cyclist was on the roadway when hit, if the cyclist was easily visible, how fast the driver was going, etc. And the place to begin that determination is with the law.
The laws involving bicycles are very important because in order to win a claim you must demonstrate that the motorcyclist acted careless in some way, which was a proximate cause of the accident. You can do this by showing that the motorcyclist was driving too fast, not paying attention, or performing some other careless act, which helped to cause the accident. These laws, however, impose the same duty of care upon the bicyclist. For instance, the cyclist may share degree of fault if he rode into the cross walk without first watching for traffic, or if he attempted to cross at a time when it was impossible for the motorist to stop safely. In that situation, the cyclist may share a good percentage of fault for causing the accident that inflicted him with injury.
For these reasons, educating yourself about local laws involving bicycles is very important to understanding not only the nature of the claim, but also the process that will resolve it. This is particularly important in Washington State, where the state government and many local communities in recent years have been very active in encouraging more people to travel by bicycle. Part of this promotion has involved changes in laws that favor cyclists, but which many people may not be fully aware of. In other words, knowledge of the law can help keep you and your loved ones safe.
Consult with an attorney if you have been injured in a bicycle accident. Contact premier bicycle accident attorney in Seattle, Chris Davis at (206) 727-4000 to schedule a free consultation.