Tigard Bicycle Accident Lawyers

A Cyclist Attorney Protecting the Rights of Fellow Cyclists

Bikers in Gresham Oregon

You may be the most law-abiding bicyclist in the state. You practice defensive cycling strategies and know every rule. Unfortunately, no matter how careful you are, you cannot control the behaviors of those sharing the roads with you. Despite your best efforts, you may still find yourself the victim of a bicycle accident, and as a victim, you deserve compensation from the party who caused your accident and subsequent losses.

Trust the experienced bike accident lawyer at Kline Law Office P.C., whose practice covers Tigard and the surrounding area, to guide you through your fight for justice and financial recovery. Our skilled, compassionate team will handle your case with care and efficiency, working tirelessly to hold negligent parties accountable. Do not risk settling for less than you need to recover and deserve for your suffering. Instead, put your case in the experienced, capable hands of our Tigard bicycle accident lawyer.

Bicycle Accidents Nationwide and in Oregon

Recent data from BikeLeague.org shows Oregon leads the country in the number of commuters who bike to work. This status is great for Oregon’s air quality and the cardiovascular health of its cyclists. However, bicyclists are vulnerable to other health hazards, specifically serious injuries, when involved in an accident.

Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows bicycle accidents represented 2.2% of all traffic fatalities for the most recent year of reporting. That percentage represents 966 lives. Analysis of data for a recent decade shows bicycle accident fatalities trending upward, going from 623 to 966 over that time span.

NHTSA reports also show that “bicyclist injuries remain consistently, disproportionately high.” For the same year, 966 cyclists lost their lives, and about 41,615 sustained injuries, a number representing a 7% increase from the year prior. Over a recent five-year period, injury accidents averaged 45,4010 per year. 

Additional bicycle-related-fatality statistics from the NHTSA show:

  • 85% occurred in urban areas.
  • Slightly more than half, 52%, occurred in the dark.
  • 62% occurred at non-intersections, while 29% happened at intersections, and the remaining 9% at locations including road shoulders, bike lanes, sidewalks, shared paths, and driveways, among others.

Oregon has a 3.0% bicycle-accident-fatality rate. It is one of 13 states with a rate higher than the 2.2% national average, according to the NHTSA.

The Rules of the Road for Bicyclists

Legally speaking, Oregon considers bicycles to be vehicles. This means cyclists have the same rights and must follow the same laws as motor vehicle operators. For example, along with adhering to other requirements, cyclists must:

  • Ride in the same direction as traffic, except for rare occasions when bike lanes are marked as “one-way,” when you go against the flow of traffic, or when a two-directional bike lane is on one side of a street.
  • Ride in bicycle lanes when they are available except in special circumstances, such as when there is an obstacle in the lane, or the biker is making a left-hand turn.
  • Yield to pedestrians when riding on sidewalks when it is legal to do so (it is not legal to ride on sidewalks in the downtown core of Portland, for example).
  • Slow to the speed of a person walking when entering a crosswalk.
  • Stop at steady red lights. Cyclists may treat a stop sign or flashing red light as a “Yield” sign, but make sure to slow and check for traffic that has the right of way.
  • Comply with specific bike signals and signs when they are present.

Oregon Bicyclist Manual provides additional requirements for bicyclists traveling through construction zones, paths or trails, or interstates and freeways.

Steps to Take Following a Bicycle Accident in Tigard

Despite traffic laws and safety regulations for cyclists and motor vehicle drivers, crashes still happen. Many happen as a result of distracted driving on the motorist’s part. Often, motor vehicle operators will claim the cyclist caused the accident with an unsafe maneuver or because they failed to stay out of the driver’s blind spot. If you are physically capable of doing so, there are ways to protect yourself from unfair blame right at the accident scene.

  • Get contact information from the person who hit you or caused the incident.
  • Write down or take pictures of the vehicle operator’s driver’s license and registration, the vehicle’s license plates, and their insurance company and policy number.
  • Speak to accident witnesses and get their contact information.
  • Take pictures of the accident scene. Include roadway conditions, the presence of traffic or security cameras, your injuries and bicycle, and any other relevant details.
  • Call authorities and make an official accident report.
  • Avoid discussing the accident with other parties involved, and be careful to say nothing that could be taken as an admission of fault.

Oregon law requires parties involved in a traffic accident to submit a Oregon Traffic and Accident Insurance Report with the DMV within 72 hours if there are injuries or more than $2,500 in property damage. Even if your injuries seem minor, call authorities to the scene. 

Here are a few examples of evidence that can be useful in a bike wreck case:

Get Medical Care

See a doctor as soon as possible following the accident. If you do not need emergency services, get care within hours or a day (at most) of the incident. The adrenaline rush that follows an accident can hide pain and injury–even serious injuries. Do not risk worsening your condition by postponing care.

Prompt medical care also protects your bike-accident injury claim. Failure to see a doctor immediately could give the at-fault party room to argue your injuries were not that bad. Alternatively, they could say you made your injuries worse by delaying care and therefore you, not the accident, are to blame for your aggravated condition.

Call an Experienced Bike Accident Attorney

Connect with the Tigard bike accident lawyers from Kline Law Offices P.C. The sooner you secure representation, the sooner we can protect your rights. It is critical to gather evidence like security camera footage while it is still available.

How a Tigard Bicycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You

When you connect with our bike accident attorney, you are working with a team that understands you. Attorney Rob Kline is an avid cyclist himself, and is dedicated to protecting injured members of the cycling community.

Your attorney will investigate your situation carefully to determine what happened, identify the at-fault party, and collect evidence to hold that party accountable. Though evidence varies from case to case, our team will not leave any avenue of possible evidence unexplored. Very likely, we will collect evidence from:

  • Witness testimony
  • Police reports
  • Accident scene photos and video footage
  • Damage to the involved vehicle and your bike
  • Your medical team providers
  • An accident reconstruction engineer or other relevant experts

Managing Legalities

Once your case is in our hands, we will handle all legalities. Under Oregon Statutes 12.110(1), injury victims have two years from the date of the incident or discovery of their injuries to file a legal claim against the at-fault party. If your claim is against a government entity, there are additional legal deadlines. For example, if unsafe road conditions or inoperative traffic signals caused your accident, the government agencies responsible for overseeing those areas may be culpable. No matter who the at-fault party is, our bicycle accident attorneys in Tigard, OR, can handle your case.

Dealing With Insurance Companies

All Oregon drivers must carry minimum auto insurance. If another driver caused your accident, your attorney will work to negotiate a settlement to cover your losses with that driver’s insurance company. Unfortunately, some drivers do not comply with the requirement for coverage. You may file a personal lawsuit against the driver, collecting compensation through their personal assets. Of course, most who drive without insurance do not have many assets, so this option may not be suitable.

If you are an insured driver, your policy includes “PIP” or personal injury protection to cover certain medical costs and lost wages. It also includes uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) Your attorney will review your policy and fight to ensure you get the compensation you deserve from the uninsured or underinsured driver that caused the accident. 

Injuries and Losses Sustained in a Bicycle Accident

Cyclists are especially vulnerable when involved in accidents as they have no protection from motor vehicles weighing thousands of pounds.  Wearing a helmet is one of the most important things you can do to reduce the risk of injuries. Research reported by the NHTSA shows helmet use reduces:

  • Head injuries by 47%
  • Serious head injuries by 60%
  • Traumatic brain injuries by 56%
  • Face injuries by 23%
  • The number of cyclists seriously injured or killed by 34%

Not all riders wear helmets. Oregon helmet laws only make helmet use mandatory for cyclists under 16 years of age, and research from the American Medical Association (AMA) shows helmet use is at 42% nationwide.

Bike accidents can cause a variety of serious injuries, including:

  • Traumatic brain injuries including concussion
  • Damage to the muscles, ligaments and other connective tissues in the neck and back
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Broken bones in the upper and lower limbs
  • Broken jaws, teeth, or occipital bones
  • Road rash, which can lead to infection
  • Lacerations

These injuries bring obvious physical pain and losses to function including diminished mobility and cognition. Accident victims also often suffer emotional trauma from the event itself and from its physical consequences. Then there are the significant financial losses. These include lost wages. Some victims never regain the abilities needed to return to work or may only return in a diminished capacity. Past and future medical costs also can be substantial.

Collecting Damages for a Bicycle Accident Claim

“Damages” is the legal term for the financial compensation victims are entitled to recover for their accident-related expenses and restore them, as much as possible, to their pre-accident state. Money cannot remove emotional trauma or heal physical injuries, but it can afford victims access to needed medical care or counseling and opportunities to improve their quality of life and provide financial stability. 

Your bike accident lawyer will assess your losses with precision and calculate a fair settlement demand. Settlement amounts vary from case to case, but you can expect your bicycle accident attorney to seek compensation for:

  • Lost wages, and if you cannot work again, lost future income and work benefits.
  • Medical expenses, and if you need continuing care, coverage for necessary future care.
  • Property damage if your bicycle or other property was damaged or destroyed in the accident.
  • Other expenses related to the accident.
  • Pain.
  • Emotional suffering and embarrassment.
  • Decreased enjoyment of life.

How Oregon’s Fault Laws Can Affect Your Settlement Amount

Oregon follows a comparative negligence system when determining compensation amounts. To be eligible to hold the at-fault party accountable, victims must share less than 51% of the blame for the accident. If victims hold some fault (but less than 51%) they can pursue damages. However, the collected amount will be reduced according to the percentage of assigned fault.

The at-fault party’s representatives will try to assign as much blame to you as possible. The bicycle accident lawyer at Kline Law Offices P.C. will challenge these accusations to maximize the compensation you deserve.

Experienced, Insightful Legal Advocacy

Our team is ready to get to work for you. We will support you through a confusing, challenging time and fight to maximize your recovery and bring you a sense of justice. You can contact Kline Law Offices P.C. with a call or a message and schedule a free case review. We look forward to a successful partnership.

Rob Kline Understands Bicyclists

bicycle attorney

Attorney Rob Kline is an avid cyclist. Rob understands what it is like to negotiate traffic and deal with inattentive and aggressive drivers. Let us help you prove your case against the driver who is legally responsible for your injuries. Call today for a free, confidential case evaluation.

(503) 224-6246


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Injured as a Bicyclist in Tigard? Contact Rob Kline Personal Injury Lawyer

You can get help from an experienced and trusted bicycle accident injury attorney serving Tigard, Oregon, by getting in touch with Rob Kline Personal Injury Lawyer today. For a free, no-pressure consultation, give our law firm a call at 503-224-6246 or fill out our online contact form below.

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