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What You Can Do to Prevent Bicycle Injuries and Fatalities

3 ways to improve safety

Spring is here and summer is right around the corner. With the warmer weather, more and more people will be out bicycling. It is an ideal time to consider bicycle safety and how to prevent bicycle injuries.

Increased consciousness about fitness and the benefits of bicycling has led to a vast increase in bicycling for recreation and commuting. Unfortunately, with more bicycles on the road, we are also seeing more bicycle injuries and fatalities. Hospital admissions due to bicycle injuries more than doubled between 1998 and 2013 according to the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Experts agree that cyclists can take some basic precautions to improve safety:

  1. Wear a helmet and reflective gear;
  2. Have lights for night riding; and
  3. Ride defensively.

By far the best means of preventing bicycle injuries and fatalities is for motorists to obey the Rules of the Road (Wisconsin) and exercise care when encountering bicyclists. The most common contributory factors attributed to drivers who cause motor vehicle collisions include:

  • Failure to maintain a proper look-out;
  • Improper turning;
  • Failure to yield the right-of-way;
  • Alcohol impairment;
  • Speeding;
  • Travelling too fast for conditions; and
  • Dooring (failing to lookout for cyclist when opening a vehicle’s door after parking).

With summer fast approaching it is a good idea to review the Rules of the Road and make sure you know how to keep yourself and others safe on our roads. Accidents involving bicycles typically involve more serious injuries, so it is absolutely essential for motorists to keep an eye out for cyclists, and drive defensively.

 

Attorney Terrence M. Polich is a partner at Clifford & Raihala, S.C. Attorney Polich is an experienced trial lawyer, specializing in auto accident cases, including bicycle injury cases. Attorney Polich is also an avid bicyclist.

$2,000,000 Settlement For Wrongful Death Of Bicyclist

In spring of 2014, Attorney John Raihala settled a case for the wrongful death of a 47-year-old bicyclist. The man biking in a designated bike lane in Madison when a flatbed tow truck made a left turn in front of him. Despite efforts to resuscitate him at the hospital, the collision was fatal. During investigation, police discovered that the left turn signal of the tow truck was not working at the time of the accident, meaning the bicyclist had no time to react.

The case was settled before filing suit and the client received a $2,000,000 settlement. “This was a wrongful death and it was important that the family received compensation for their tragic loss,” commented Raihala.

If you would like more information about Clifford & Raihala, S.C. Attorneys at Law, please call 608-257-7900 or visit http://www.myjustice.com/contact/.

$575,000 Settlement For Personal Injury

Attorney Keith Clifford and John Raihala obtained a $575,000 settlement to compensate their client who was injured in a bicycle accident. The client was in the bike lane when a woman opened her car door, obstructing the client’s path. The client was thrown into the air, collided with another vehicle and landed in the street. As a result, the client suffered from fractures to his cervical spine, clavicle, pelvis and seven ribs, as well as lacerations to his kidney and a collapsed lung.

Clifford and Raihala successfully resolved the case in mediation. “We felt that it was important to settle this case without a trial so that our client could receive compensation and begin to move forward with his life,” commented Clifford. The total settlement amounted to $575,000 including $39,000 for lost wages and consulting contracts and $75,000 for medical expenses.

If you would like more information about Clifford & Raihala, S.C. Attorneys at Law, please call 608-257-7900 or visit http://www.myjustice.com/contact/.