Hundreds of Wisconsin bicyclists are injured each year in crashes with motor vehicles. For cyclists, these collisions often result in severe injuries that require costly medical treatment.
If you were hurt or a loved one was killed in a bike accident caused by a negligent motorist, the Madison injury attorneys at Boller & Vaughan are here to help you recover the financial security you need.
Our experienced lawyers offer free consultations to help you understand your options, and we work for personal injury clients on a contingent-fee basis, which means we don’t get paid until we successfully resolve your case.
Compensation for Wisconsin Bike Crash Victims
Because bicyclists lack the protections of those in passenger vehicles, their injuries are often more serious in the event of a collision with a motor vehicle.
Common injuries in bike accidents include:
- Broken and fractured bones
- Severe lacerations
- Amputation injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Spinal cord injuries
Compensation in bicycle accident cases may include money for:
- Immediate and long-term medical expenses
- Disfigurement or scarring
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of income
If a loved one was killed in a bike accident caused by a careless motorist, surviving family members may be able to pursue compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit.
Wisconsin follows contributory negligence rules, which can reduce compensation should a percentage of fault be assigned to the injured party.
If an injured bicyclist is deemed partly responsible for the collision, compensation is reduced by a percentage equal to the cyclist’s fault.
An important factor to note is Wisconsin’s bicycle helmet law, or lack thereof. Although all bicyclists—and particularly children—are advised to wear helmets, Wisconsin does not have a primary helmet law for cyclists. If a helmetless bicyclist is struck by negligent car driver, the cyclist is not at fault for not wearing a helmet.
Factors in Wisconsin Bike Accidents
Bicyclists have the same basic rights as motorists. Cyclists must ride on the right side of the road, in the same direction as traffic; they must also indicate their turns (using hand signals), and they are required to report an accident that results in injury.
Many bike crashes are the result of negligence by motor vehicle drivers. Distracted driving is one factor that increases the risk of a collision between a motorist and a cyclist.
In 2017, a commuting bicyclist from Madison was hit by a driver who was ultimately charged with vehicular homicide due to distracted driving.
Not all bicycle accidents are the result of motorist negligence, however. In Wisconsin, 90 percent of all child bicycle crashes are the result of rider error, according to data from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation.
Adults cyclists are less likely to be at fault for a crash, but they are also more likely to be struck by a motorist.
In fact, about 60 percent of adult bicycle crashes are the result of motorist error. Motorists often fail to notice the presence of bicyclists when proceeding through an intersection, turning or changing lanes.
According to the most recent state data regarding Wisconsin bike crashes, most accidents occur in urban areas including Milwaukee, Madison, Appleton, La Crosse and West Allis.
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a bike crash caused by a careless motorist, our Madison injury attorneys are here to pursue the compensation you need to cope with medical costs and other damages.
Call the accomplished bicycle accident lawyers at Boller & Vaughan today at 608-268-0268 or contact us online for your free consultation. We welcome clients from the greater Madison area and throughout Wisconsin.