Monroe Bicycle Accident Attorney
Bike Accidents in Louisiana
While biking offers a fun and relatively easy way to get around, it also comes with its fair share of risks. Unfortunately, Louisiana has been consistently ranked among the top most-dangerous states for bicyclists by various reports since 2015.
According to data compiled by the Center for Analytics and Research in Transportation Safety (CARTS) at Louisiana State University, there were 722 bicycle-involved accidents in Louisiana in 2020, resulting in 559 people being injured and 35 fatalities. The total number of bicycle accident fatalities represents a 59.1% increase from the previous year and an overall increase of 2.9% in the past five years.
For those injured in bicycle accidents in Louisiana, as well as for the families of those wrongfully killed, the future can seem incredibly uncertain. But it is important that you remember you have rights. At Parker Alexander, we represent injured cyclists and their loved ones and fight to hold negligent motorists accountable.
Louisiana Bicycle Laws
Anyone who rides a bike in Louisiana should be aware of all state and local cycling laws. Often, bicycle laws vary from city to city, parish to parish, and municipality to municipality. It’s important that you know and follow all applicable laws to help keep yourself and others safe.
Below, we’ve provided a general overview of some of Louisiana’s bicycle laws:
- All riders under the age of 12 must wear an approved bicycle helmet
- Cyclists are permitted to use full traffic lanes in addition to bike lanes and paths
- Cyclists should ride as far to the righthand side of the roadway whenever possible/appropriate
- Motorists are required to exercise “due care” when passing/overtaking cyclists, including leaving a distance of no less than three feet between the cyclist and the vehicle
- Cyclists must obey traffic lights and other traffic control devices, such as stop signs
- No statewide laws prohibit or permit riding on sidewalks, but local laws may state whether a person can ride a bicycle on a sidewalk
Importantly, Louisiana defines bicycles as “vehicles.” As such, bicycle riders have all the same rights and responsibilities as people in other motor vehicles, such as cars or trucks.
Many factors play a role in bicycle accidents in Louisiana, but one of the most prominent is negligence. While negligence is often defined as general carelessness, it can also be used to describe reckless or wrongful conduct, such as hostility toward cyclists on the part of motor vehicle drivers.
Some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents in Louisiana include:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Following or passing too closely
- Opening vehicle doors into a cyclist’s path
- Failure to obey traffic control devices
- Fatigued driving
- Unsafe or unlawful merging/passing
While these examples demonstrate some of the leading causes of bike accidents that stem from motorist negligence, other factors often contribute to crashes. These factors include things like weather conditions, visibility levels, the time of day or night, and defective road conditions. Additionally, bicycle defects and defective safety gear, such as helmets, can contribute to the overall impact of a crash.
Who Is Liable for a Bike Accident?
Because Louisiana is an at-fault state, you will need to prove that another person or party was at fault for the accident if you wish to recover compensation for your damages. By proving fault, you can establish who is liable for your economic and non-economic losses.
Depending on the specifics of your case, any of the following parties may be liable for your bicycle accident:
- A negligent or reckless motorist
- A drunk driver
- A careless truck driver or commercial vehicle operator
- The manufacturer of a defective product
- A negligent pedestrian or fellow bicyclist
- The entity responsible for designing/constructing a defective roadway
At Parker Alexander, we work with a team of investigators to determine exactly what caused the accident, as well as who is liable. We also gather applicable evidence, such as medical records and accident reports, to establish the extent of your damages. From there, we can aggressively advocate for the maximum compensation you are owed.
Helping You Get Back on Your Feet
Bike accident victims often sustain severe, life-altering injuries, from broken bones to brain injuries to spine injuries and paralysis. Our Monroe bicycle accident attorneys understand the importance of recovering full, fair compensation for your current and future medical expenses, as well as your lost wages, physical pain, emotional suffering, and other damages.
Regardless of the complexity of your case, our award-winning team is ready to fight for you. We have developed a solid reputation in our community for providing personalized, client-focused representation and for taking on major insurance companies and their defense teams. We know what is at stake, and we are ready to fight tirelessly for you and your recovery.
Give us a call at (318) 625-6262 to speak to a member of our legal team about your bike accident case today.