Livable communities supporting bicycling and walking are a priority of the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and the Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT). Livable communities refer to those that provide safe and convenient transportation options to all residents. While biking is a healthy, economical, and fun transportation alternative, bikers face many road hazards. Our experienced bicycle accident lawyer Portland at Mann Law, LLC provide clients with confidential and skilled representation in their bike accident claims. Contact a bicycle accident lawyer Portland if you’ve been hurt in a bike accident. 

Portland Bike Accident Lawyer

Maine cyclists, like pedestrians and motorcyclists, are vulnerable road users because they do not have the protection of an enclosed vehicle compartment, which leaves them more susceptible to injury or death. Further, while it is against Maine law for anyone under 16 to ride a bicycle without a helmet, there is no rule for those over this age. Consequently, bike accidents can be especially catastrophic when they involve unhelmeted bikers. If you have been injured in a bike accident call a Portland bike accident lawyer today. 

Bike Accident Statistics in Maine 

The Federal Highway Administration reports that each year, bicyclist and pedestrian fatalities make up nearly 19% of all traffic fatalities. Despite improvements in engineering, enforcement, education, and emergency services, bike accident injuries and deaths continue to rise. 

According to 5-year data involving Maine highway crashes by the MDOT, there were 880 bicycle crashes, with 811 crashes involving injuries, 12 crashes involving fatalities, and 57 involving property damage only. Cumberland County, which encompasses Portland, has the highest number of bicycle crashes in the state. Data also indicates that most bike crashes occurred between 4 pm and 5 pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Further, nearly 15% of the crashes involved bikers between the ages of 30 and 39. 

Contributing Factors to Maine Bike Crashes 

Most bicycle accidents involve several contributing factors. Understanding the relevant contributing factors is critical to determining liability and apportioning fault and damages after an accident. 

Driver Actions

The top driver actions that may contribute to a Portland bike accident include:

  • Failing to yield right-of-way,
  • Improper turning, and
  • Erratic, reckless, careless, aggressive, or negligent driving.

A combination of these and other driver actions often contribute to bike accidents. 

Bicyclist Actions

The bicyclist actions that contribute to accidents include the following:

  • Riding in traffic,
  • Riding across the road, and
  • Riding against traffic.

Maine bicycle laws generally give bicyclists the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle operators. Thus, bikers must obey the road rules to avoid serious accidents. 

Vehicular Factors 

Vehicular factors that contribute to bike accidents include the following:

  • Faulty brakes,
  • Issues with car doors, and
  • Steering defects.

In addition to inherent defects, a driver’s actions can increase the severity of an accident. 

Data suggests that most Maine bike accidents occur in clear conditions during daylight hours, as those are the times that cyclists are most likely riding their bikes. 

Most Common Bike Accident Injuries

The precise combination of biker errors, motorist errors, environmental hazards, and mechanical failures in causing bike crashes is unclear; however, they are all likely significant. The severity of an injury largely depends on the circumstances leading to the bike accident. However, the most common injuries after a Maine biking accident include the following:

  • Head trauma, 
  • Acute trauma to the upper or lower extremities, 
  • Abrasions (road rash),
  • Contusions, and 
  • Lacerations.

These injuries can lead to traumatic brain injuries, scarring, swelling, pain, bruising, and life-long disability. In many cases, bike accident injuries require significant and long-term medical treatment, including surgery, physical rehabilitation, occupational therapy, and pain management. 

Recoverable Damages after Portland Bicycle Accident 

Bike accident victims may incur many direct and collateral consequences because of another’s negligence. Compensable damages after a biking accident include the following:

  • Past and future medical expenses,
  • Lost wages,
  • Lost future earning potential,
  • Pain and suffering,
  • Emotional distress, and
  • Loss of consortium. 

An attorney can help accident victims understand the scope of recoverable damages available in their cases. In addition, an experienced lawyer can explain the interplay and impact of Maine’s insurance and personal injury laws. 

When Do I Call a Lawyer After a Bike Accident?

When do I call a lawyer after a bike accident? Taking specific steps after a bike accident can make a significant difference in the outcome of a case. The most critical steps after a bike accident are to:

  • Seek medical treatment if necessary, 
  • Contact the police to make a report, and 
  • Call a personal injury attorney. 

If possible, victims should take photographs of the scene of the accident, gather relevant information from witnesses, and ask for police reports. Although insurance companies purport to work for their policyholders, insurers often prioritize their financial standing. It is essential that bike accident victims do not make any official statements or sign anything before speaking with an attorney. 

Contact a Portland Bike Accident Attorney Today

If you or someone you love was recently hurt in a Portland bicycle accident, contact a Portland bike accident attorney today. The bike accident attorneys at Mann Law have two decades of experience investigating, negotiating, and litigating bike accident cases, helping to connect our clients with the compensation they need to start moving on with their lives. At the same time, we understand that these cases are not just about money—they are also about obtaining justice for you and your family for everything you’ve been through. As a former insurance company lawyer, Chrissy Mann has an unrivaled understanding of the insurance claims process, which allows her to effectively negotiate fair settlements for many of the firm’s clients. And as an experienced litigator, she is equally comfortable taking a case to trial when the insurance company is unwilling to extend a fair settlement offer. To learn more and to schedule a free consultation today, call 207-618-6531 today. You can also contact us through our online contact form.