St. Louis Bicycle Accident and Injury Attorney
Helping victims of bike collisions and crashes seek compensation
Bicyclists face many unique challenges in the St. Louis area. Sharing the road with motor vehicles means following the same safety laws as everyone else, but also dealing with the hassles of heavy traffic, less visibility, and less protection than those in cars and trucks. Cyclists also tend to have less room to maneuver when riding, which puts them at further risk for accidents and collisions.
Even with the miles and miles of bike lanes in our city, negligent and reckless drivers still cause tragic accidents. At The Hayden Law Firm, we protect victims of bicycle collisions and crashes, determining the person responsible for your injuries and holding them accountable. We seek financial compensation for your damages and losses, never settling for anything less than to what you are entitled. Contact us today for a free, no-risk consultation. We serve the greater St. Louis area and Illinois.
How common are fatal bicycle accidents in the United States?
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) collects and analyzes data regarding motor vehicle crashes, including bicyclists and pedestrians. They report that about two percent of motor vehicle accident deaths annually are cyclists. Further, most bicyclists die from injuries to the head, which underscores the importance of wearing a bicycle helmet.
Other trends from the IIHS include:
- In 2019, 843 bicyclists were killed in motor vehicle accidents
- 90 percent of those killed were age 20 and over
- 520 cyclists involved in fatal crashes were not wearing a helmet
- Among bicyclists aged 16 and older in fatal crashes, 21 percent had BAC of 0.08 percent or higher
- Fatal bicycle crashes and collisions are most common in July (12 percent) and August (11 percent)
- 78 percent of cyclists were killed in accidents in urban areas
Here in Missouri, nearly 390 bicyclists were injured or killed in crashes in 2019.
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What are the most common causes of bicycle crashes?
Although the circumstances of every accident are unique, some at-fault drivers’ actions tend to happen more than others. Some of the major reasons bicycle collisions and accidents occur include:
- Dangerous roadways or bad weather conditions
- Driver negligence, which can include driving under the influence, distracted driving, or driving while fatigued
- Drivers failing to yield to bicyclists
- Drivers or passengers opening doors without checking for cyclists
- Motorists failing to obey traffic signs and signals
- Motorists making improper turns, typically left turns
- Vehicles following or passing cyclists too closely
If you have been injured in a bike crash, or lost a loved one in a fatal bicycle accident in St. Louis, a personal injury lawyer at The Hayden Law Firm can help you determine your options.
Do you have to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle in Missouri?
Although bike helmets are not required by Missouri state law, most counties have their own specific laws regarding the use of helmets, usually required by age. For example, in St. Louis County, children aged one to 16 are required to wear a protective helmet. However, some municipalities require people of all ages to wear a helmet. You can find a complete list of Missouri bicycle helmet laws here.
Whether or not a helmet is required by law, bicyclists should always wear one – especially children. Consumer Reports states that 78 percent of adult and 88 percent of child bicyclists who suffered head and neck injuries in an accident were not wearing helmets.
Bill Nesper, Executive Director of the League of American Bicyclists, told the publication, “Wearing a helmet is one of the easiest things you can do to protect yourself if you’re riding.”
What are the bicycle safety laws in St. Louis?
The Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation provides a summary of rules motorists must follow when sharing the road with bicyclists, including the following.
- Bicyclists may ride on any street, barring travel lanes on interstate highways or where prohibited by local law
- Bicyclists are required to follow the same traffic rules as other motorists, including following traffic signals and riding on the right side of the road
- Motorists may not pass cyclists if it will put the bicyclist in danger
- Motorists may not drive, park, or stand in bicycle lanes
- Drivers must yield to cyclists in bike lanes and check before turning
These laws are designed to keep cyclists of all ages safe from accidents and injuries.
What are the most common injuries from bicycle crashes?
Often in bicycle accidents and collisions, the cyclist is thrown from their bike to the ground or into another object, like a windshield. This type of impact can result in serious or catastrophic injury, including:
Overwhelmingly, victims of bicycle accidents suffer a high incidence of head injuries, especially when not wearing a helmet. Survivors of bike crashes may also experience emotional trauma and post-traumatic stress syndrome.
What should I do if I’m injured in a bike accident?
Bicycle crashes tend to be serious and, like any type of accident, dealing with the aftermath can be complex and stressful. Following these steps can help ensure your injuries are taken care of properly and that you protect your potential injury claim:
- Call 911 or the police. Having authorities on the scene will help stabilize your injuries and get a report of the accident. A police report will have valuable information you will need later for both an insurance claim and legal action. Medical treatment will ensure your injuries are treated properly and provide you with documentation.
- Get contact information. Gather names and phone numbers of any witnesses to your accident, as well as the driver who hit you, if possible. Do not have any other conversation with the at-fault party, as anything you say could potentially be construed as admitting you were partly at fault.
- Document everything. Take pictures or video of the accident scene, damage to your bike, to the other vehicle, the road conditions, and your injuries. These will back up the police report and strengthen your case.
- Contact an experienced attorney. The Hayden Law Firm will launch an investigation into your accident, determine who or what was at fault, and prove how they caused your injuries.
What kind of compensation can I recover after a St. Louis bicycle accident?
If you were injured in a bike accident due to the negligence of a motorist or defective roadway, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Here at The Hayden Law Firm, we can help you seek this compensation for your injuries and losses while holding the right party (or parties) accountable for your injuries.
We build a compelling and strong case on your behalf, working to secure damages like:
- Lost wages, current and future
- Reduced earning capacity
- Medical expenses, current and future
- Mental or emotional distress
- Property damage
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Rehabilitation and therapy expenses
Contact our offices as soon as possible, as bike accident injury claims in Missouri must meet a five-year statute of limitations.
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Bicycle accident claim lawyer in St. Louis
If you lost a loved one in a bicycle crash, or were injured yourself, due to a driver’s negligence, The Hayden Law Firm can help. For over 15 years, we have helped injury victims in St. Louis secure financial compensation when they are injured through no fault of their own. Please call our offices at 314-480-3100 or fill out our contact form for a free, no-risk consultation. We are based in St. Louis, Missouri, but our firm proudly serves clients throughout Missouri and Illinois.
St. Louis Office
230 S Bemiston Ave #1107, St. Louis, MO 63105