Riding a bike can be a great way to embrace more eco-friendly forms of transportation and maintain a fitness routine. However, cyclists may not always be treated with respect and care by motorists on main roads. When Portland Oregon bicycle laws are ignored by drivers, serious accidents and injuries can occur. If you’re hurt in an accident while cycling, it’s important that you’re aware of the potential risks and the next steps to take.
What Are the Most Common Bicycle Accident Injuries?
Because bicyclists are far more vulnerable than motorists are, they’re usually the ones who sustain more significant damage in the event of a collision. Some of the most common bicycle accident injuries may include:
- Head Trauma: Head injuries and brain injuries often occur in bicycle accidents — even when the cyclist is wearing a helmet. This category can include anything from scrapes and cuts to concussions, skull fractures, and even traumatic brain injuries.
- Bone Fractures: When a rider is thrown off their bicycle during a collision, their body can become injured in any number of ways. Hand injuries, as well as fractures in the arms, shoulders, feet, wrists, legs, hips, and clavicles, are common. Severe breaks can also occur. In some cases, these injuries may be so severe that surgery becomes necessary.
- Neck or Spinal Cord Injuries: When a bicyclist is injured in a crash, they may sustain damage to the vertebrae, tendons, muscles, or nerves in their neck or throat. They could also experience a spinal cord injury, which can be extremely serious. In some instances, this can lead to paralysis.
What Should You Do if You’re Hurt in a Bike Accident?
The list above outlines a few of the most serious and most common bicycle accident injuries, but there are certainly others that can occur. No matter how serious you believe your cycling injury might be, it’s important to seek out immediate medical attention following an accident. You should call 911 to ensure you receive that treatment and that the accident is reported and documented.
After filing a report, obtaining motorist information, and documenting both the scene and your injuries, you should contact a Portland bicycle accident lawyer to learn more about your options. In many bike accident cases, the motorist’s negligence may have resulted in the cyclist’s injuries. If that applies to your situation, your lawyer can advise you on how to proceed. While around 95-96% of personal injury cases are settled pretrial, the circumstances of your case may warrant a court proceeding. This could depend on the extent of your injuries and the details of your particular case.
Although there are many common bicycle accident injuries that occur amongst cyclists, that doesn’t mean they’re not a big deal. In fact, one collision has the power to change the life of a cyclist. If you’ve been injured while riding your bicycle at the hands of someone else, you should contact a lawyer to discuss your case and the options might be available to you.