Articles Posted in Bicycle Accidents

Bicycling is an increasingly popular transportation method in Massachusetts, however, the increase in bicycling corresponds with a rise in Massachusetts bike accidents. To address the dangers of biking, cities have created bike lanes to make biking safer and more accessible. Although, bike lanes are part of a more significant nationwide safety effort, they often pose risks of their own, especially when the lanes are poorly designed.

According to the National Association of City Transportation, a bike lane is a defined part of a roadway that has been designated for the exclusive use of bicyclists. These lanes are typically marked with distinctive signage or markings. The lanes allow bicyclists to safely ride without traffic interference. However, in most cases, bike lanes do not have any barriers to protect cyclists from encroaching vehicles. These lanes usually run in the same direction as traffic; but in some instances, there may be portions that run in the opposite direction of traffic. It is crucial that cities thoroughly evaluate traffic patterns and provide sufficient buffers and signage to protect bicyclists from traffic, pedestrians, and parked vehicles.

Despite safety measures, bike lanes pose risks because of the inherent danger of bicyclists sharing the roadway with vehicles. In fact, some argue that bikers and motorists fail to appreciate the danger of sharing the road because of the false sense of security that a bike lane may provide. However, many accidents can be avoided if these lanes are appropriately designed and include sufficient signage and barriers.

Bicycling is popular amongst Massachusetts residents, both as a means of transportation as well as for leisure. The state has created and fostered a sense of community amongst bicyclists by designating more bike lanes and designing laws to protect cyclists. However, despite, caution on the part of bicyclists, they are often involved in serious accidents with drivers with whom they share the road. According to the United States Department of Transportation, there have been over 500,000 bicycle injuries and 8,000 fatalities in the last ten years. Many of these serious injuries and deaths occur in heavily populated and dense urban areas, such as Boston. In many Massachusetts bicycle accident cases, the bicyclist is not at fault, and may be able to pursue a claim for compensation against the at-fault party.

Some common causes of Massachusetts bike accidents are inattentive driving, failing to provide cyclists with enough room on the road, or otherwise violating traffic laws. Further, cyclists may also suffer injuries because of defective bike parts such as faulty brakes or tires. Additionally, poor road conditions, inadequate road signs, or defective traffic control devise may result in a Massachusetts bike accident. Finally, one of the most common causes of bike injuries is from “dooring accidents.” Dooring accidents occur when a driver opens their car door onto a bike path. Massachusetts has specific statutes designed to protect against these accidents. However, despite these laws, dooring is the cause of almost 20% of all bike accidents.

These accidents can have serious and life-altering consequences for cyclists. Accident victims often suffer broken bones, soft tissue injuries, brain injuries, fractures, amputations, spinal cord injuries, post-traumatic stress disorder, and even death. For example, recently, a local Boston news report described the tragic death of a bicyclist hit by a car. According, to the attorney general’s office, three bicyclists were hit when they were riding their bikes in Ipswich. The man was airlifted to a hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries; the other two cyclists are still recovering.

Warm weather means more bicycles on the road. While bicycling is a fun activity and a great way to exercise, it can be dangerous. Motorists often ignore or fail to pay attention to bicyclists on the road, causing serious and sometimes deadly accidents. If you are a bicyclist who has been hurt in an accident caused by a motorist’s negligence, you might be eligible to recover monetary compensation. Our Massachusetts bicycle accident attorneys are devoted to protecting the rights of injured bicyclists across the state.

According to the League of American Bicyclists (LAB), Massachusetts ranks as the fourth most bike friendly state in the country. The state boasts 36 bicycle friendly businesses, 12 bicycle friendly communities and 7 bicycle friendly universities. LAB is a membership organization that promotes cycling for fun, fitness and transportation through advocacy and education. One of LAB’s goals is to create safer roads and a bicycle friendly nation. While Massachusetts is considered to be a bicycle friendly state, the truth is that accidents do happen. In fact, there were 10 bicyclist deaths in 2016 and 2017. In 2018, bicycle fatalities dropped to 6 and in 2019, there have been 3 bicyclist deaths to date.

Aside from a helmet, bicyclists have no real protection in the event of an accident. This level of exposure can lead to serious, even deadly injuries to the bicyclist who is hit by an oncoming automobile. Sadly, most vehicle-bicycle collisions are the result of driver inattention. Distracted drivers often strike or sideswipe bicyclists, especially on roads where there are no designated bike lanes. If a motorist’s negligence caused your bicycle accident and resulting injury, you may be able to recover compensation. In Massachusetts, negligence refers to the failure of an individual to exercise reasonable care, thereby causing injury to another. Reasonable care refers to the duty to act in a way that a prudent person would act in the same or similar circumstances. Winning a negligence claim requires establishing the following: i) the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care; ii) the defendant breached the duty of care; and iii) the defendant’s breach was a direct cause of the bike accident and plaintiff’s resulting injury.

Bicycle accidents can cause devastating injuries. If you have been hurt in a bicycle accident, you may be able to seek monetary damages for your injuries and losses. Our reputable Massachusetts bike accident lawyers have over 25 years of experience and understand what it takes to advocate for your rights. We will examine the circumstances surrounding your accident and devise a legal strategy accordingly.

A 32-year-old Brewster man was left critically injured when a driver hit his bicycle and fled the scene. The incident took place just after 9:30 pm on Millstone road where the victim, when riding his bike, was hit by a vehicle – potentially a Sedan. The victim was rushed to a hospital by Medflight and has already undergone two surgeries. He was also in a coma and is now sedated. Police are still investigating the case, as the driver still has not been located. The victim’s family is pleading for information from anyone who may know anything about the crash.

Sadly, bicycle accidents happen quite frequently. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that 783 bicyclists died in traffic accidents in the country in 2017. As you may expect, when an accident takes place between a vehicle and a bicycle, it is the cyclist that is most likely to be hurt. Bicycle riding is very popular in parts of Massachusetts. In fact, ridership more than doubled from 2007 to 2015. The Massachusetts Bike Coalition reports that there were 10 bicyclist fatalities in 2017 and 6 bicyclist deaths in 2018.

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If you have been injured in a mishap that was someone else’s fault, you can potentially recover monetary damages through a personal injury lawsuit. At The Law Offices of Barry Feinstein & Affiliates, P.C., our diligent Massachusetts injury attorneys have worked in this legal space for over 25 years and have a thorough understanding of how to pursue the compensation you deserve. Having helped countless clients, we know how stressful a serious injury can be for you and your whole family, which is why we will focus on your case so that you can focus on healing.

In a recent case, the Massachusetts’s Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) was asked to address the circumstances under which an injured victim is required to give 30-day notice for accidents involving road flaws. The facts of the case are as follows. The plaintiff was hurt on his bike and struck a utility cover that was not properly aligned with the street surface. The plaintiff then sued the city. The city declined responsibility saying that an energy corporation was at fault for the improperly aligned cover. The plaintiff subsequently sued the energy company. However, the judge dismissed the claim citing plaintiff’s failure to provide notice to the company within thirty days of the plaintiff’s injury, as necessitated by a state statute. Specifically, M.G.L. c. 84  § 15 of the Torts Claims Act requires an injured person to provide notice of the injury within 30 days to the county, city, town or “person by law obliged to keep said way in repair.”

Ultimately, the SJC reversed the lower court’s decision, holding that the statutory requirement of notice within 30 days to a potential defendant purported to be accountable for road defects giving rise to injury only applies to  government defendants but not to private sector defendants. The court explained that the road defect and notice statutes apply to the government and quasi-government parties responsible for the public duty of preserving the public way and not to a private party, such as a corporation, that has created a specific defect in the road. This is true even when a private corporation is permitted by the government to fix a particular road defect. Thus, the plaintiff in this case was not required to give thirty days’ notice to the corporation and the corporation could be sued without such notice.
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Bicycle accidents almost always cause more harm to the cyclist than the motor vehicle driver. Even when a bicyclist is wearing a helmet, he or she is not protected from broken bones, crush injuries, brain injuries and other types of serious injuries. If your loved one has been injured or killed in a bike accident, contact a seasoned Massachusetts bicycle accident attorney. At The Law Offices of Barry Feinstein & Affiliates, P.C., we are committed to helping you with your claim and getting you the monetary damages you deserve.

A bicyclist recently died from her injuries after being struck by a cement truck in Fenway. Officials identified the victim as Paula Sharaga, 69, of Cambridge. Sharaga’s husband commented that she was a peace activist and a beloved librarian for 20 years in the community. According to an initial investigation, the cement truck was stopped momentarily at a traffic light. When the light became green, the truck began to drive ahead while Sharaga was riding her bike in the intersection. She was hit by the front of the truck and died as a result. The crash is still under investigation, including the chain of events leading up to the deadly crash.

Establishing Fault After a Bicycle Accident

Bicycle riding is very popular in parts of Massachusetts. In fact, ridership more than doubled in Boston from 2007 to 2015. Sadly, bicycle accidents are more common than you may think. According to the Boston Cyclists Union, 12 of the 18 cyclist deaths in the state were in Boston and Cambridge over the last seven years.

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