It’s the old saw: Safety first. But is this really too trite a phrase to use when approaching the dangers of a busy intersection? Whether one is driving a car, riding a motorcycle or pedaling a bike, each activity has its own specific risks. For the passenger car driver, there is the possibility of a crash if another driver is in too much of a hurry and turns in front of the other car.
A motorcycle rider can be injured simply by not being seen in time by another driver, while a cyclist or pedestrian can be blind-sided by a city bus or delivery truck, causing serious or fatal injury. Regardless of the type of accident, the resulting bodily injuries and possible trauma can send an individual into shock, something which quick medical attention from an EMS team can provide if there is time.
From broken bones to ruptured internal organs, a serious traffic collision can make for a long and costly hospital stay for the survivors. If the accident was caused by the negligent or careless actions of another party, there may be grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. As Maryland injury attorneys, we know how a family can be spun into turmoil after a bad car or trucking-related collision.
Physical recovery is hard enough for someone badly hurt in a roadway accident; financially, however, a family may find it even harder to dig itself out from under the many hospital bills and rehabilitation costs. For motorcyclists and bicycle accident victims, potentially deadly injuries like closed-head trauma and spinal cord damage can require weeks or months to heal, while regaining mobility or other basic functions can take years.
Considering all this, it’s often a wise idea to consult with a qualified automobile accident lawyer to better understand one’s situation following a bad traffic wreck. One example of a crash that could have killed a bicycle rider happened in the District last month. At the time of the news article, little was said about the victim, save for the fact that he was in terrible pain, according to eye witnesses.
According to police reports, the crash occurred around on a Tuesday morning at the D.C. intersection of 11th and U Street NW. The unnamed rider was reportedly traveling southbound along 11th St. on one of the Capital Bike Share bicycles available for use around the city. The man was apparently riding alongside a flatbed lumber truck when the driver turned right onto U St. directly into the cyclist.
Eyewitnesses told police and news reporters that the victim was apparently dragged beneath the commercial vehicle for a distance of about 10 yards; and run over by three sets of wheels. One witness to the truck-bike accident stated that the bike rider was hit first by the truck’s front wheels, then by the rear set.
At the time of the new article there was no mention of the rider’s condition after being admitted to a local hospital. Although police said that the man was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, it would seem that he did survive the accident; though to what extent he was injured is anyone’s guess.
Based on news articles, this incident was the 17th reported case involving a participant in D.C.’s bike-share program. While this sounds like a lot of accidents, to put things in context, the program has recorded upward of 1.5 million individual rides to date. While many users enjoy the program for its convenience, the District’s Department of Transportation is apparently seriously considering expanding the program to include helmets — through the participation of some hotels in town. And maybe that’s not a bad idea.
Bicyclist Hit By Truck In DC, WUSA9.com, February 28, 2012