Helping Bicyclists and Pedestrians
When a motor vehicle collides with a person on a bike or on foot, the results can be tragic. Pedestrian and bicycle injuries can result in severe brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and wrongful death. If you or someone close to you has suffered a bicycle or pedestrian accident, is important to have a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer on your side.At David Randolph Smith & Associates, our experienced attorneys stand up for the rights of those injured by the careless and negligent actions of others. Our firm is dedicated to helping injury victims obtain justice and compensation.
Bicycle travel is becoming more and more common as people seek healthier, cost-effective and environmentally friendly means of transportation. Unfortunately, not all motorists respect the rights of bicyclists and pedestrians on streets, highways, and in parking lots, intersections and other locations.
Many bicycle and pedestrian accidents are the result of the driver simply not seeing the accident victim. This is no excuse. Motorists are obligated to be attentive and watch out for pedestrians and bicycle riders. Failure to do so constitutes negligence.
Of course, the opposing party may claim the accident was your fault. We are prepared to counter such arguments. Our attorneys have access to experts in accident reconstruction, human factors and other relevant fields who help us prepare our cases. This depth of knowledge allows us to identify weaknesses in the defendant’s case and present compelling arguments for our clients. We will put our experience, skill and resources to work for you, to help you pursue full and fair compensation for the losses you have suffered.
Bicycle Accident Frequently Asked Questions
1. Can I Sue For My Bicycle Accident?
If you were injured – or a family member was injured or killed – due to the negligence or fault of a motorist of other party, while riding a bicycle, you can bring a lawsuit against the negligent party to recover damages. As a matter of fact, if the at-fault party does not immediately accept responsibility we would file the lawsuit as soon as possible. If not, valuable time is wasted.
2. Who Are The Parties I Can Recover Damages From For My Injuries?
- Negligent drivers of automobiles, buses or trucks – if the accident was caused by the driver of a vehicle
- Negligent manufacturers or retailers of bicycles, bicycle parts, bicycle accessories and/or vehicles – if the accident was caused by a defective product
- The City, County or State who maintains the roads – if the accident is caused by a dangerous condition created by an unsafe roadway
- Negligent repair shops or mechanics – if the accident was caused by negligent repair of a vehicle or bicycle
- Dangerous condition of public property – if the accident happened due to negligent design, maintenance, or upkeep of public property – including construction, tree trimming, etc.
- Dangerous condition of private property – if the accident was caused by the negligent maintenance or upkeep of private property.
3. What Are My Rights And Responsibilities As A Bicycle Rider?
Tennessee law provides a bicycle rider with the same rights and responsibilities as an automobile or other vehicle operator. Therefore, the laws pertaining to bicycle riders fall within the Tennessee Code and an accident is handled similar to an automobile accident. Certain exceptions may apply if the bicycle is not actually being “ridden” at the time of the accident.
4. Are There Any Special Laws That Apply To Bicyclists?
The Tennessee Code does have some specific sections that apply only to bicycle riders. These laws not only protect a bicycle rider, but also set forth specific responsibilities and duties.
These laws include regulations on such topics as:
- Drinking or using drugs while riding
- Specifics on where the bicyclist may ride and at what speeds
- Specifics on the equipment a rider is required to have on their bicycle and on their person when riding
- The use of hand signals
- The use of bicycle lanes
- The number of riders allowed on a bicycle
- Specifics on the use of vehicle traffic and turn lanes.
5. Can I Be Found At Fault In My Bicycle Accident?
If a bicyclist violates the laws set forth for safe operation of a bicycle and that violation is found to be a contributing or causing factor of the accident, then the bicycle rider may be found at fault. If a bicycle rider is found to be operating their bicycle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they may be arrested for a DUI and can lose their driver’s license as well.
6. Have You Represented Bicycle Clients Where The Damages Were Not Caused By A Motor Vehicle?
Yes. Our bicycle law firm has and or is representing injured cyclists in the following situations:
- Dog Attacks: Loose dogs are a major hazard to cyclists. Dogs can knock a cyclist off his bicycle, causing serious injuries. State law requires dog owners to be on notice of a dog’s propensity to attack or to run off the property after cyclists or others who are passing by. The dog does not necessarily have to bite.
- Product Liability (bike, helmet, assembly): If some part of the bicycle gives way, causing or contributing to the crash, we will have the bicycle examined by an expert rather than a bicycle shop. We need to know if there was an equipment malfunction such as brake failure, failure of the pedal to release properly, etc.
- Motor Vehicle Harassment: Cyclists, particularly those wearing Spandex or Razors are frequently subject to harassment by drivers. Harassment ranges from shouting to cursing, buzzing (passing too closely) or throwing objects at the cyclist. Some states have passed laws specifically prohibiting harassment of cyclists and making certain harassing behavior criminal. If such behavior causes injury to the cyclist, there is coverage pursuant to the harassers homeowner’s insurance. Motor vehicle insurance policies exclude intentional acts. Throwing objects from cars at cyclists have been held not related to the operation of motor vehicles and are therefore not covered by auto insurance policies.
- As a victim of a bicycle/pedestrian accident you may be unable to work and support your family and may face years of rehabilitation. It is important to have an experienced and knowledgeable law firm representing you in your claim and against third parties. At David Randolph Smith & Associates, Attorneys at Law, our Tennessee and Nashville lawyers have been representing those injured by drivers for over 30 years. We are available to assist clients throughout all of Tennessee including, but not limited to, Nashville, Murfreesboro, Lebanon, Gallatin, Clarksville, Chattanooga, Memphis, and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
- Injuries from a Tennessee Bicycle Accident, require a reliable personal injury law firm such as David Randolph Smith & Associates to begin immediately protecting your rights. A Nashville bike accident lawyer of the law offices of David Randolph Smith & Associates is extremely experienced and successful in obtaining compensation for bicycle accident victims. We have handled numerous lawsuits against negligent parties and have obtained millions of dollars on behalf of our clients.
- David Randolph Smith & Associates has received the AV rating under Martindale-Hubbell’s peer review rating system. Our firm has been listed in Best Law Firms in America. Our attorneys’ credentials are both individually and collectively impressive; they include certification as a Medical Malpractice Specialist, selection as a Mid-South Super Lawyer**, attorneys named in the Top 100 attorneys in Tennessee by Law and Politics Magazine and inclusion in the guidebook Best Lawyers in America.
- A detailed free consultation with one of our Nashville Bike Accident Lawyer or pedestrian accident attorneys, puts a team of respected legal professionals, independent investigators and medical experts to evaluate your Tenessee bike accident lawsuit immediately and confidentially.
- The firm’s Nashville, Tennessee bike accident attorneys have close working relationships with local, state and federal law enforcement and officials and investigators.