Tulsa Bicycle Accident Lawyers
Premier representation when vehicles strike a bicycle rider
Tulsa is a great location for riding a bicycle. Riders can enjoy the scenery, get some exercise, run errands, or even ride their bikes to work. Sometimes, though, riding a bike can be very dangerous. Often, cars and trucks fail to respect the right of a bicycle rider to be on the road. Many drivers fail to stop at intersections for a bicycle rider. When Tulsa riders crash, they are likely to end up in the hospital – if they’re lucky enough to survive.
At Biby Law Firm, our Tulsa bicycle accident attorneys have the experience, resources, and persuasiveness to help you obtain justice. We’re ready to help you today if you were injured, or a loved one was killed while riding a bicycle in the Tulsa area. Our lawyers work with investigators, the police, and witnesses to show how the accident happened. We work with your doctors and our network of doctors, when necessary, to show all the ways your injuries are making your life difficult.
How can we help?
- Why do bicycle accidents happen in Tulsa?
- What injuries are common for bicycle riders in Tulsa?
- Who is liable for a bicycle accident in Tulsa?
- What if I’m injured in a hit-and-run?
- What if my injuries are the result of a road defect?
- What rights and duties govern bicycle riders in Oklahoma?
- How Tulsa cyclists can stay safe on the road
- Do you have a bicycle accident lawyer near me?
Bicycle accidents are all too common. Many bicycle accidents are deadly. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that almost 1,000 bicycle riders die each year and 130,000 are injured – in traffic crashes. About 1/3 of all emergency room visits for bike injuries involve riders between 10-24 years of age.
Many bicycle accidents happen because drivers fail to respect the right of bicycle riders to be on the road, or to understand how to drive when they see a bicycle rider. Car drivers commonly fail to respect the right of bicycle riders to cross at intersections.
Some of the common causes of bicycle accidents and accidents involving Lime and Byrd scooters in Tulsa include:
- Speeding. Drivers who are traveling over the speed limit don’t have time to respond to a bicycle rider who may be in front of the driver, or who may cross the driver’s path.
- Driver distraction. Drivers who text while driving, use a cellphone, eat, drink, or do anything that takes a hand off the steering while, their eyes off the road, and their minds off traffic are a danger to any bicycle riders on the road or a bicycle path.
- Driving under the influence. Drivers who drive while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs are not able to control their vehicles. Many bicycle accidents happen because the driver drank and drove when he/she should have made alternative transportation arrangements.
- Poor weather conditions. Drivers need to take extra precautions when it snows, rains, the sun is glaring, or it’s foggy. These precautions include getting off the road, slowing down, and using the horn to warn any bicycle riders nearby.
- Intersection accidents. Drivers need to respect the right of bicyclists to cross at intersections when the light turns green. Car and truck drivers should never run a red or yellow light. They must stop at stop signs. Drivers need to respect the right of bicycle riders to turn too, and to look for bicycle riders crossing or going through an intersection – in the same ways the drivers should look for cars.
A few other reasons bicycle accidents happen are because drivers don’t slow down in neighborhoods or near schools or understand how to drive at night. In some cases, drivers who violate any of Oklahoma’s other traffic laws can cause a crash.
Because neither bicycles nor clothing offer any real protection, riders are often catastrophically injured when they are hit by vehicles or other riders, or when a road defect sends them sprawling. These types of injuries almost always require medical attention, and some may leave riders with life-long injuries. The more serious of these injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injuries
- Neck, shoulder, and back injuries
- “Road rash,” leading to infections or necessitating skin grafts
- Broken bones
- Organ damage and/or internal bleeding
- Vision and hearing loss
- Many other injuries
In some cases, the injuries may be the result of striking stationary objects. For example, cyclists can be critically injured when a driver or passenger opens a vehicle door and the cyclist hits it. Loose gravel or dirt can cause a cyclist to slide out, leading to sprains, strains, and head injuries.
The driver is usually liable when a vehicle causes a collision. The owners of the vehicle, if they are different than the driver, may also be liable. For example, parents who give their teenager permission to drive their car may be liable if the teen strikes a bicycle rider. It is not uncommon for property owners and governmental entities to potentially be involved if construction or maintenance of land or roadways played a part in an incident occurring.
The bicycle rider may also bear some responsibility. In cases where the bicycle rider was partially responsible, the award could be reduced by the percentage the cyclist was deemed at fault. This is because Oklahoma has a contributory negligence statute. It is also one reason why working with an experienced Tulsa personal injury lawyer is so important. Biby Law Firm can help prove that you are entitled to damages.
Some drivers unconscionably strike a bicycle and then drive away without stopping, providing his/her contact information, and helping the victim. Our bicycle accident lawyers work with investigators and the police to find people who refuse to own up to their public duty to identify themselves after a car accident. If the liable party cannot be found, you may be able to make a claim through your own UM/UIM insurance policy, depending on the language and circumstances of your injuries.
There are a lot of lovely country roads outside of the city of Tulsa – perfect for a day of riding your bike. These lovely country roads, however, may not be properly maintained which can lead to potholes, cracked asphalt, and loose dirt or gravel. If you are injured because of a road defect, you may be able to hold the city or town liable, but there are very strict regulations for these types of cases. Make sure to call us right away to see if you can file a claim, because the statute of limitations may be different. Generally, you need to notify government entities and agencies within six months from the date of the accident.
Different towns and cities have different regulations and ordinances that govern bicycle operations. When bicycle riders are permitted to ride on any road, drivers generally need to treat the bicycle rider like any other driver. You can access Tulsa’s full ordinance for cyclists here. Some of the relevant laws include the following:
- The manner of riding
- The proper speed
- Riding on the right side
- The right-of-way
- Riding abreast
- Restrictions of certain vehicular traffic in certain areas
Some highlights include:
- Cyclists cannot ride more than two abreast
- Cyclists should stay as close to the right-hand curb as possible when sharing the road
- Cyclists can’t park their bikes and obstruct pedestrian traffic
- Cyclists are not allowed on any of the following roads:
- The Inner Dispersal Loop (IDL)
- Sidewalks adjacent and parallel to South Peoria Avenue, from East 33rd Street to East 36th Street
- Sidewalks adjacent and parallel to East 15th Street, from South Peoria Avenue to South Utica Avenue
According to Bicycle Universe, bicycles are treated as vehicles, with a full right to the road and duties towards other users, except in cases where the law wouldn’t realistically apply.
Oklahoma does not mandate that riders wear helmets, but cities and towns are free to impose their own rules which may require helmets. An emerging area of increasing concern concerns bike-sharing services such as Lime, Jump and Wheels.
Cyclists and e-bike riders also have a duty to be vigilant. There are some steps cyclists can take to protect themselves while out on a ride, such as:
- Look both ways before crossing.
- Wear bright clothing and/or reflective clothing at night and when riding in more rural areas.
- Wear helmets when riding.
- Carry flashlights when walking.
- Add bells and/or headlights to bikes.
- Keep cellphones charged in case of an emergency.
- Always ride with traffic and use bike lanes when available.
Biby Law Firm has two Tulsa offices located at 1646 S. Denver Ave and 6305 E 120th Ct., Suite K9. We also meet clients at their homes or healthcare facilities when necessary, and can conduct video conferences when desired or required by the circumstances. Our lawyers are respected by former clients, insurance companies, and defense lawyers for our record of strong representation of our personal injury clients.
Make the call to an experienced Tulsa bike accident attorney today
Time is critical when a loved one is killed, or you are injured. At Biby Law Firm, our bicycle accident lawyers will answer all your questions and guide you through the process. For prompt help with any bicycle accident in or near Tulsa, call us or complete our contact form to schedule a free consultation. We handle catastrophic injury cases on a contingency fee basis. We proudly serve all of Oklahoma including the communities of Broken Arrow, Bixby, Claremore, Jenks, Sand Springs, Sapulpa, Wagoner, Muskogee, Owasso and the surrounding areas.