Bicycle Accident under Texas Law
Bicycles are not only used as a form of recreation but also a form of transportation. Cyclists often operate on roads alongside motor vehicles and pedestrians, not to mention other cyclists.
Unfortunately, bicyclists nay be killed and/or injured in accidents caused by the actions of negligent automobile drivers who for one reason or another failed to see them. Cyclists may also be seriously injured by defective bicycle parts, unsafe bicycle paths or even the actions of nearby pedestrians.
Under Texas law a bicyclist is generally considered to be a vehicle and must follow basic traffic laws. They must ride with the flow of traffic including stopping for stop signs and stoplights at intersections.
Cyclists that are struck by a motor vehicle are vulnerable to serious injury or even death. Bicycle riders involved in accidents with automobiles often sustain serious head and spinal injuries, neck and back injuries, and broken bones. When a bike goes flying even the seats are handlebars can turn into potential sources of serious injury.
Under Texas law persons injured in an accident involving a bicycle and a motor vehicle, pedestrian or other cyclists may be entitled to recover damages for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering.
Texas is amongst the highest for bicycle fatality rates in the country. Most motorists assume that bicycles should be on the shoulder of the road and not on pavement or asphalt roadways. However Texas law does not require or restrict cyclists from operating on roads alongside other vehicles. Often Texas drivers do not understand the impact their car can have on a bicyclist particularly at higher speeds where even the draft of their car and cause an accident.
In some cases an accident may be caused not by a driver's or cyclist's negligence but a governmental entity that is responsible for the condition of the road or trail itself. One example of this type of condition are potholes or other unrepaired road conditions.
If you are in an accident involving a bicycle is important to obtain a written accident report by a law enforcement officer. Do not attempt to negotiate with any of the other parties on the scene. Do not repair your bicycle immediately after the accident as it may itself become evidence in any legal action that is taken. It is also advisable not to communicate with an insurance company before consulting an attorney.
John Q. Lawyer
Attorney at Law
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