Bicycle Accident Lawyers, New Orleans, Louisiana
Unfortunately, bicycle accidents occur in New Orleans far more frequently
than in other parts of the country. We are a walking and riding city,
and with more pedestrians and cyclists on the road, there are more opportunities
for accidents to occur. Moreover, most traffic laws were written for safe
automobile travel, not bike traffic. There are often misunderstandings
by both drivers and cyclists as to how cyclists are supposed to comply
with the rules of the road. Does a cyclist need to obey a red light or
stop sign just like drivers? If there is no bike lane, can a cyclist travel
in the middle of the road like other vehicles, or must he always travel
along the side of the road?
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, you should seek advice
from a bike accident lawyer. Our New Orleans bicycle accident attorneys
will do everything we can to make sure that you are protected going forward.
We will help you seek financial compensation for medical expenses, lost
wages if you are unable to work, and the cost of repairing your bicycle.
Generally, if you were hurt while riding a bike, and the accident was
due to another driver’s fault, then you can recover from that driver’s
automobile insurance company. In addition, we can help you determine whether
your own auto accident insurance may actually provide additional insurance
coverage even though you were injured on a bike, rather than in a car.
Why should I contact a New Orleans bicycle lawyer today?
How much insurance does the other driver have in my bicycle accident?
What if the driver who hit me while I was biking does not have insurance?
What if neither the owner nor the driver of the vehicle has insurance for
my bike accident?
What if I was partially at fault in my bicycle accident?
What bike safety improvements have been made in New Orleans?
What are the most dangerous streets to bike in New Orleans?
How often do bicycle accidents in New Orleans occur?
Unfortunately, cyclists often face undue prejudice when it comes to evaluating
who was at fault when an accident happens. Many motorists assume that
cyclists are supposed to travel on the sidewalks rather than the road,
and have little sympathy for cyclists even when a serious accident occurs.
Moreover, many police officers are not well versed in the rules of the
road when it comes to cyclists. As a result, the officer who arrives at
the scene of your accident may not correctly interpret who is at fault.
You may end up with a traffic citation even though the motorist who hit
you was at fault.
Also, unlike car accidents where the location of the damage on the automobile
can provide important evidence in determining how an accident occurred,
bikes are often so mangled or destroyed after a serious accident that
no helpful evidence is available. A bike accident lawyer can help you
with these issues and make sure that you are protected, but you should
contact a bike accident attorney as soon as possible because the longer
you wait, the more potential damage can be done to your case.
While Louisiana law requires minimum liability coverage of $15,000.00 per
person and $30,000.00 per accident, there are many other insurance options
available to drivers on the road. Common liability amounts are $25,000.00,
$50,000.00, $100,000.00, $250,000.00, $500,000.00 and even $1,000,000.00.
Most insurance carriers have a company-wide policy where their auto accident
claims adjusters are instructed not to disclose the amount of liability
coverage available to the injured person. This practice is employed to
keep the injured person in the dark as to how much they may potentially
recover for their injuries. A bike accident attorney, however, can help
you determine how much liability coverage may be available to you.
Under Louisiana law, you may be able to recover for your bicycle accident
injuries even if the other driver that struck you while cycling has no
insurance. If the owner of the vehicle that hit you has insurance, and
the owner gave permission to another person to operate the vehicle, and
that other person causes an accident, then you can recover from the vehicle
owner’s insurance company. In this situation, the person that caused
the auto accident while driving someone else’s vehicle is called
a “permissive driver.” Louisiana law strongly favors insurance
coverage for permissive drivers in order to protect injured victims of
vehicle accidents, including bicycle accidents.
You may still be able to recover financial compensation for your bicycle
accident if you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (“UM
Coverage”) on your own auto insurance policy. UM coverage is designed
to provide you with an extra layer of coverage protection in a car accident
where the other driver that caused the accident has no insurance, or does
not have enough insurance to pay for all your injuries.
For example, if the driver who caused the accident has only $15,000.00
in liability coverage, but your medical bills are $25,000.00, then the
other driver’s auto insurance company would pay for the first $15,000.00
in bills, and your car insurance company would pay for the remaining $10,000.00
in bills, so long as you have UM coverage.
Even if you were somewhat at fault in causing your bicycle accident, you
can still recover financial compensation for your medical expenses, lost
wages, and pain and suffering. Louisiana bicycle law dictates that the
level of fault of every person must be evaluated in bicycle accidents.
If one person is partially at fault for causing the bicycle crash, they
can still recover from the other driver or cyclist who was also at fault.
In recent years, however, New Orleans has invested significant funds for
proper bike lanes to be marked on busy roads throughout the city. New
Orleans has also painted numerous “sharrows” on the roadways
to instruct other drivers to share the road with cyclists. A sharrow is
pictures of a bicycle with arrows pointing towards a nearby bike lane.
The first sharrows in New Orleans were placed around City Park, but have
since been marked near other bike lanes throughout New Orleans.
The 2009-2010 New Orleans Regional Pedestrian and Bicycle Crash Report
indicated that certain streets throughout the city are particularly dangerous
|Top 10 Bicycle Crash Corridors, Orleans Parish
||Number of Crashes, 2009-2010
||St. Charles Ave.
||St. Claude Ave.
||Elysian Fields Ave.
||N. Rampart St.
The New Orleans Regional Pedestrian and Bicycle Crash Report of 2009-2010
released the following figures regarding the frequency of New Orleans
|Bicycle Crashes Per Year, 2006-2010
||Number Of Crashes
Clearly there has been a consistent rise in bicycle accidents over the years.