Alton Bicycle Accident Lawyers
Advocating for the rights of cyclists with severe injuries from Illinois accidents
Riding a bike is a popular and inexpensive way to get around. You don’t need a license and you don’t need insurance, which makes a bicycle a good choice if you like to ride. Bikes are also environmentally friendly, provide cardiovascular benefits, and convenient. However, they also have their downsides. If, as a cyclist, you’re hit by a car or other vehicle, you’re at risk of suffering serious injury due to the bike’s complete lack of protection.
Bicycle accidents can occur due to a variety of factors, too many of which to list right here. However, our attorneys find that in many cases, motorist negligence is to blame. If you or a loved one were injured in a bicycle collision, Glisson Law is here to help. We’ve been helping folks in and around Alton secure the financial compensation to which they’re entitled for more than 25 years, and we want to help you too. Reach out to us today and we’ll start talking about what we can do for you.
How can we help?
- How often do bicycle accidents happen in Illinois?
- What are my rights as a bicyclist?
- Are bicyclists required to wear a helmet?
- Can I still sue even if I’m partially at fault for my bike accident?
- Can I sue a municipality for failure to maintain a road?
- How can your Alton law firm help with my bicycle accident claim?
- Do you have a bicycle accident lawyer near me?
How often do bicycle accidents happen in Illinois?
The National Safety Council (NSC) offers a variety of data on fatal bicycle accidents across the country. In 2020, they report 1,260 bicyclists died in accidents – 806 in traffic crashes and 454 in non-traffic incidents. However, the NSC also notes that the number of cyclists killed in accidents each year depends on the data you’re looking at:
The estimated number of bicycle-related injuries and fatalities varies depending on the data source. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 932 bicyclists were killed in motor-vehicle traffic crashes in 2020, an 8.9% increase from 856 in 2019. Bicyclists’ deaths accounted for 2% of all motor-vehicle traffic fatalities. The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports 425,910 emergency department-treated injuries associated with bicycles and bicycle accessories in 2020. This estimate includes both preventable and intentional injuries. The estimates provided in the interactive chart are limited to preventable fatal injuries only.
More locally, the Illinois Department of Transportation reports in “Crash Facts & Statistics” that in 2020:
- 28 people were killed in bicycle-motor vehicle crashes, out of a total 2,141 accidents
- 1,964 cyclists suffered injuries, with 310 suffering severe injuries
- Bicyclists accounted for 2.7% of all injuries experienced in motor vehicle accidents
Even one bicycle accident fatality is too many.
What are my rights as a bicyclist?
Illinois Vehicle Code addresses bicycle rights and responsibilities directly under Article XV, Sec. 11-1502. They state that every person riding a bicycle upon a roadway is granted all road rights and is subject to all of the duties applicable to drivers of a motor vehicle, with some exceptions. Any person operating a bicycle on a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic is expected to ride as close as practicable to the right hand curb or the edge of the roadway. If a bicyclist is riding on a sidewalk, the cyclist also has a duty to yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian before overtaking and passing them, and give an audible signal before passing said pedestrian.
Are bicyclists required to wear a helmet?
In most states, if you’re over the age of 17 or 18, you’re not required to wear a helmet. Illinois, similar to motorcycles, does not require bicyclists to wear helmets, although they are recommended. A front light and rear reflector for night riding is required by law. It’s important to understand all the laws of your state and city – for example, in some areas of Illinois, bike messengers are required to wear helmets while performing their jobs.
If you are injured by the negligence of a third party, the fact that you are not wearing a helmet will not admissible in court. A jury could speculate that you were not wearing a helmet if you sustain a head injury, but the lack of a helmet will not be admissible as comparative fault. Our Alton bicycle accident attorneys will ensure insurance companies and juries understand both the law and the facts.
Good To Know: You’re most at risk for a serious or fatal bicycle accident in August and least at risk in February, per the NSC.
Can I still sue even if I’m partially at fault for my bike accident?
Illinois is a modified comparative negligence state. This means if you are more than 50% at fault for an accident, you will not be eligible for financial recovery. If a jury finds you to be 50% or less at fault, then your damage award is reduced for your percentage of negligence.
This is why it’s so important to have an experience Alton personal injury attorney on your side, one who will work to demonstrate you hold zero fault in the accident that caused your injuries.
Can I sue a municipality for failure to maintain a road?
Yes. However, Illinois only imposes a duty of ordinary care on municipalities to maintain property for uses that are both permitted and intended. When suing a municipality for your bike accident, some of the factors the court takes into consideration include how the cyclist was using the path or road in question. In legal terms, “the intent of the local public entity is controlling.” In other words, the issue depends on whether the municipality intended that the injured bicyclist use that part of the street or pathway where the injury occurred, and permitted the plaintiff to do so. One way our attorneys prove that a municipality is liable for your accident is by looking for roadway markings and signs indicating that bicyclists are allowed.
How can your Alton law firm help with my bicycle accident claim?
Our bicycle accident lawyers put all our resources behind our injury cases, including yours. We advocate aggressively for you when dealing with the insurance companies and opposing counsel, and never settle for a penny less than you deserve for your injuries and losses. We have a strong record of results for victims of bike accidents, including:
- 10-year-old girl on crosswalk struck by motor vehicle at a high speed, head injury.
- Woman riding on roadway struck pothole, flipping bicycle and landing on her head, causing severe and permanent brain injury, lawsuit brought against municipality.
- 15-year-old boy, front tire rolled bicycle as he lifted tire over curb, product liability claim involving quick-release tire.
When we take your case, we determine the entire scope of your damages – current and future – and work tirelessly to secure the compensation to which you’re entitled.
Do you have a bicycle accident lawyer near me?
Glisson Law is located at 111 East Fourth Street, Suite 400, in Alton, IL. We’re a block away from City Hall, and you can find plenty of parking across the street. There’s also a bus stop right outside our office. Glisson Law conducts phone and video conferences when applicable, and makes home and hospital visits if you cannot travel to us.
Alton bicycle accident lawyers advocating for you
Bicycle accidents can result in life-altering injuries that take you out of commission for weeks or months, and you may never be the same again. When someone else’s negligence caused your accident and injuries, the attorneys at Glisson Law can help make things right. Let us work to secure the financial compensation you need while you take the time to heal from your injuries. To schedule a free consultation, call our offices or fill out our contact form. We serve Belleville, Edwardsville, St. Clair and Madison County, and all of Southwestern Illinois.