In September 2017, the Washington Post reported that Washington, D.C. was now being served by three dockless bike-share companies and the nation’s first electric dockless bike-share provider. Mobike, LimeBike, Spin, and Jump DC all provide dockless bike share options while Capital Bikeshare is another bicycle-sharing program that has 4,300 bikes and more than 500 stations.
The Washington City Paper asked if the death of a longtime bicycle advocate killed on April 19, 2019, while riding near 12th Street NE and Florida Avenue NE would be enough to prompt a change in Washington, D.C. The DCist reported that a week after that fatal accident, hundreds of people laid down on Pennsylvania Avenue directly in front of the Wilson building for eight minutes, one minute for each person killed in a traffic crash since the year began, while the names of 128 people killed in such accidents since 2015 were read aloud.
Did you suffer severe injuries or was your loved one killed in a bicycle accident in the greater Washington, D.C. area? You should make sure that you seek legal representation to give yourself the best chance at recovering all of the compensation you are entitled to.
CHASENBOSCOLO has been helping injury victims in Washington, D.C. since 1986. Call (301) 220-0050 or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation.
Do I Need A Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
Bicyclists often think that it is quite clear that drivers are at fault for their crashes, but you should never assume a driver’s insurance company is going to see things the same way. An insurer will immediately look for all possible ways to reduce your compensation or justify a complete denial.
The insurance company could claim that you were at fault because you did not obey the rules of the road. They might also claim that your failure to wear a helmet or other protective gear contributed to your injuries.
An insurance company does not always immediately accuse a driver of negligence, but they will still be looking to exploit this avenue by trying to seem friendly and concerned in their conversations with you. A claims adjuster may ask you to provide a recorded statement in which you supposedly summarize what you believe happened. Decline their request. You should never give a recorded statement because their goal is actually to get you to say something that damages your case unknowingly.
The insurance company may also be quick to offer you a lump sum settlement to resolve your case. While these amounts can sometimes seem relatively large, you need to know that most initial settlement offers are substantially less than what people are entitled to and you run the risk of having to pay all future costs out of your own pocket once all of your settlement has been exhausted.
Why Choose CHASENBOSCOLO To Handle My Case?
CHASENBOSCOLO has a record of success that includes more than $750 million recovered for our clients. We have a team of 25 attorneys and over 90 professionals who have more than 100 years of combined legal experience and are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Barry M. Chasen and Benjamin T. Boscolo each have more than 30 years of legal experience. They have both received an AV Preeminent rating from Martindale-Hubbell, denoting the highest level of professional excellence.
Mr. Chasen is a member of the Maryland State Bar Association, American Association for Justice, and Maryland Association for Justice as well as a past chair of the Maryland State Bar Section on Negligence, Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation. Mr. Boscolo is a member of the American Association for Justice, Maryland Association for Justice, and Maryland State Bar Section Council on Negligence, Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation.
You will also want to work with CHASENBOSCOLO because we provide the No Fee Guarantee®, which means that you do not pay anything until you receive a monetary award. We will work towards a fair and full settlement to your case, but we are not afraid to take a case to trial as we have gone to court more than 500 times in just five years.
Types of Bicycle Accident Cases We Handle
Bicycle crashes occur for many reasons, but many accidents in Washington, D.C. frequently involve motor vehicles. Most of these collisions are caused by some kind of driver negligence. Some of the most common kinds of bicycle accidents in Washington, D.C. include, :
- Distracted Driving Accidents
- Rear-End Collisions
- Right-Turn or Left-Turn Accidents
- Drunk or Drugged Driving Accidents
- Intersection Accidents
- Sideswipe Accidents
- Head-On Collisions
- Failure to Yield Accidents
Not every bicycle accident necessarily involves an automobile, and other parties could be liable for other kinds of accidents. You could be involved in an isolated single-vehicle accident.
It could be possible for a manufacturer, retailer, or distributor to be liable for an accident caused by a defective part, but a repair shop or bike rental shop could be responsible for renting a defective bicycle or improper repairs of your own bicycle. Accidents caused by dangerous property conditions could make property owners liable, and governmental entities could also be liable in some cases for failure to correct dangerous road conditions.
Bicyclists can suffer a wide variety of injuries in these accidents, including but not limited to:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Internal organ injuries
- Neck injuries
- Muscle strains
- Spinal cord injuries
The family of a bicyclist killed in an accident should quickly seek legal representation to investigate and determine if there is a negligent party who could be the defendant in a wrongful death lawsuit.
Frequently Asked Questions About Bicycle Accidents
Below are some questions we at CHASENBOSCOLO frequently get from clients. We hope you’ll find the following information helpful. If you have questions about your particular case, feel free to reach out to our experienced Washington, D.C. bicycle accident attorneys by calling (301) 220-0050.
Can I still recover damages if I was partially at fault for my bicycle accident?
This will depend on where your accident occurs. Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia all recognize the doctrine of pure contributory negligence, which allows a defendant to avoid any liability when a plaintiff contributed in any way to their injury. In other words, you can only hold somebody accountable when they are 100% at fault. The District of Columbia did make an exception, however, specifically for pedestrians and bicyclists in 2016, so a bicyclist can now recover damages so long as they were not more than 50% at fault.
How long do I have to file a lawsuit for my bicycle accident?
Under Code of the District of Columbia § 12–301, you have three years from the date of the accident. The limitations period can be tolled (delayed) when the victim in a bicycle accident is either a minor (under 18 years of age) or incapacitated. In such cases, the minor will have three years to file a lawsuit from the date they turn 18 years of age, and an incapacitated person has three years to file from the date that they become mentally cognizant again.
If I need to buy a new bicycle and helmet, can I throw the old ones away?
You should not dispose of anything involved in your accident without first giving it to your attorney. The bike and helmet involved in your wreck will likely be critical for understanding the severity of your injuries and possibly proving your injury claims. You may be free to purchase new items to replace the damaged ones, but do not get rid of these items before checking with your lawyer.
Washington, D.C. Bicycle Accident Statistics
DC bicycle crash data (2005-2010) from the District Department of Transportation show that both bicyclist crashes and injuries increased steadily over those six years. There were 267 bicycle crashes in 2005 before 264 crashes in 2006 led to 281 in 2007, 334 in 2008, 353 in 2009, and 436 in 2010.
These crashes resulted in 216 injuries in 2005, 228 in 2006, 242 in 2007, 252 in 2008, 264 in 2009, and 336 in 2010. The three fatalities in 2005 were actually the most of the period, followed by two in both 2007 and 2010 while 2008 only had one fatality and 2006 and 2009 both had no fatalities. The report states there were four bicyclist fatalities in 2004, two in 2001, one in 2000 and 2002, and no fatalities in 2003.
The District Department of Transportation also reported that there were 652 crashes involving bicyclists in 2013, 863 in 2014, and 679 in 2015 (data only through August of that year). The limited 2015 data also showed that the injury types in bicycle crashes included 161 complaints that were not visible, 45 disabling injuries, one fatal injury, 268 non-disabling injuries, 143 no injuries, 23 other injuries, and 34 unknown injuries.
Contact a Bicycle Accident Attorney in Washington, D.C.
If you sustained catastrophic injuries or your loved one was killed in a bicycle crash in Washington, D.C. , know that you deserve compensation for all of your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. CHASENBOSCOLO will fight to help you get justice.
Our firm is committed to helping people recover from bicycle accidents and return to their original states or as close as possible. You can have our lawyers discuss all of your legal options when you call (301) 220-0050 or contact us online to set up a free consultation.