Liability Issues in Bicycle and Car AccidentsApril 23, 2019
Collisions between bicycles and cars can take place at any time, including in parking lots and other low-speed areas. However, there are multiple scenarios on public roads that lead to accidents between cyclists and drivers. These types of incidents most frequently happen in the following ways:
- The car is turning right. Most cyclists ride at the far right of the street, or in the bike lane, if one is available. This puts the cyclist at a disadvantage if cars do not watch for oncoming bike traffic in their rearview and passenger side mirrors. During this type of collision, the car turns right and either hits the cyclist during the turn or blocks the cyclist. In the latter case, the cyclist has no choice but to hit the car because swerving to avoid it may not be an option.
- The car is parked, and the driver is opening their door. If the bicyclist cannot safely avoid a driver opening their side door, they may plow into it at full speed.
- The car brushes against the cyclist when passing. Some streets are narrower than others, and if a bike lane is unavailable, the cyclist must carefully move with traffic. Drivers may not be watching for cyclists as they move forward, switch lanes, or make turns, which leads to a collision.
- The car rear-ends the bike. The most dangerous situation occurs when a car rear-ends a cyclist. This can happen during the day or night, which is why nighttime cyclists should always wear appropriately colored gear and equip their bikes with lights and reflectors.
- The cyclist rear-ends the car. Cyclists can run into cars, too, especially if the car suddenly stops. To avoid this type of collision, cyclists should observe the rules of the road and leave enough distance between them and the car in front of them.
Maryland’s Contributory Negligence
As with any type of highway accident, a car-bike incident would likely involve insurance companies determining which party was at-fault. However, in Maryland, it is important to note that the state has a rule of contributory negligence. For example, if you were responsible for only one percent of the accident, you are not able to recover damages in a personal injury lawsuit. It is best to consult with a car accident lawyer for the best legal recourse pertaining to your accident.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Work with Victims of Bicycle and Car Accidents
If you were injured in a car accident, the Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton can help. We will hold the negligent party accountable for your injuries and obtain the compensation you deserve. Call us at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online for a free consultation today.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent accident victims in Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Prince George’s County, Queen Anne’s County, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.