These days, more and more people are choosing to ride their bikes
to work. It could be to save money not
having to purchase and maintain a vehicle, pay for gas, etc. It could be that
they want to have a good way to exercise and stay in shape. It could be that
they want to do what’s best for the environment. Or it could be a combination
of these or other reasons.
Mississippi is a great state for biking, because we have warm
weather year-round. In the summertime, bicycle traffic is even heavier because
the kids are out of school and families like to use this time to take their
vacations and do outdoor activities together.
Biking is a wonderful activity, but it is not without its dangers.
When you are sharing the road with motor vehicles that are much larger,
heavier, and faster than your bike, the results can be disastrous if the car
and bicycle collide.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
Each year, hundreds of bicyclists are killed and thousands more
are severely injured in traffic-related crashes. And while the overall number
of bicycle accidents has been declining in recent years, the number of fatal
bike accidents has been on the rise.
Unfortunately, Mississippi has the unenviable distinction of
having the highest rate of bicyclist
fatalities per capita in the nation. Experts believe that this has a lot to
do with the fact that Mississippi is largely a rural state, and we do not yet
have the infrastructure in place to help bicyclists stay safer.
There are many reasons bicycle accidents occur, and they are very
often due to negligence on the part of the motorist. Some common causes
- Distracted Driving: A large percentage of car/bicycle
collisions are caused by the driver of the car not paying proper attention to
where he/she is going. This has become an even bigger problem in our
increasingly digitized society in which drivers feel the need to stay in continual
contact with others, even when they are behind the wheel. Texting while driving
and similar activities are especially dangerous, because they command the
driver’s full attention, and drivers sometimes fail to see a bicyclist riding
- Drowsy Driving: Another common cause of driver
inattentiveness that can lead to a bicycle accident is driving while drowsy or
fatigued. This can cause the motorist to fall asleep at the wheel, or to just be
sleepy, which results in slow reaction times and missing important details on
the road. Drowsy driving is especially common at night and among those who
drive for a living, such as commercial truckers.
- Reckless/Aggressive Driving: Some drivers are
in a hurry to get where they are going. Others, for whatever reason, just
choose to drive recklessly. Examples of
aggressive or reckless driving that can cause a collision with a bicyclist
include speeding, tailgating, weaving in and out of lanes, failing to yield the
right of way to a bicyclist, and many others.
- Chemical Impairment: Driving while under the influence
of alcohol or drugs plays a role in far too many traffic-related crashes. With
all the festivals, concerts, parties, and other events in the summertime, alcohol
use tends to increase, resulting in more DUI-related accidents. Bicycle
accidents can also be caused by the bicyclist having too much to drink.
- Rider Inattentiveness: Bicyclists are also more
susceptible to distractions these days, and this can cause them to make poor
riding decisions, which sometimes results in a collision with a motor vehicle.
- Hazardous Road Conditions: As we eluded to
earlier, lack of infrastructure and/or dangerous road conditions can often play
a role in a car/bicycle crash. This is especially common in states like
Mississippi, where there are thousands of miles of rural roads.
Injured in a Bicycle Accident in Mississippi? Contact an
experienced Personal Injury Lawyer
Car vs. bicycle collisions can cause severe injuries and even
fatalities. If you or someone close to you has been hurt in a traffic-related
by crash, you may be entitled to compensation.
Mississippi uses a pure comparative fault legal standard, meaning
you can recover damages for your injuries even if you are partially at
fault. However, damages are reduced in
proportion with the percentage of fault you share for the accident. For this
reason, it is always best to work with a skilled bicycle accident attorney, so
you can recover the maximum amount possible for your injuries.
At Reeves and
Mestayer, we have many years of experience successfully representing clients
injured in bicycle accidents, and those who have suffered all other types of
personal injuries in Mississippi. Our lawyers have in-depth knowledge of this
area of the law, and we have the knowledge, skills, resources, and dedication
to help ensure that our clients secure the full and fair compensation they need
Call us today at 228-374-5151 or toll free 1-855-558-2977 to schedule a free
consultation and case assessment. You may also message us through our web
contact form or stop by our Biloxi office in person at your convenience.