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Will County Personal Injury Attorney
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Will County bicycle accident attorneyCycling in the Chicago area gives one cause to feel both free and vulnerable. On the one hand, outdoor exercise provides a sense of well-being and allows for enjoyment of breathtaking sights of area life. On the other, the frenetic whir of traffic and daily life presents a sense of ever-present danger. A safety helmet is an unquestionable must-have item for cyclists of all ages and skill levels, but it can only protect the head and brain, leaving other areas exposed. 

When a bike accident occurs, whether with another cyclist or a motor vehicle, the injuries suffered can be severe. The trauma suffered in a bicycle collision can result in substantial medical bills, as well as adverse effects on work responsibilities, educational pursuits, domestic life, and the ability to enjoy recreation and exercise. Fortunately, Illinois state law allows for personal injury victims to recover monetary damages for the harms inflicted by a negligent individual, business, or institution.

The Nature of Injuries Suffered in a Bike Accident

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Bicycle accidentBicyclists can be severely injured after being hit by a car or truck, even if proper safety measures are being followed. In the wake of an accident, the worst thing a cyclist can do is to shrug off any aches or pains and avoid seeking medical care.

Common bicycle accident injuries include: broken limbs, brain injuries, nerve damage, and dental and jaw injuries. These can be extremely painful, they can take months or years to heal, and they can be expensive to treat. 

Be on the lookout for these conditions, which may indicate that there is a serious problem:

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Illinois bike accident lawyersA law that recently went into effect provides that motor vehicles and bicycles are to receive the same rights on the road in right-of-way situations. The law went into effect on January 1, 2017. This is an important change that is meant to enhance the protections given to bicycles and may be helpful is bike accident lawsuits brought by cyclists.

Background of Dennis’s Law

The law is named after an Illinois resident, Dennis E. Jurs, who died in a bicycle-motor vehicle accident in 2015. The driver of the vehicle was issued a traffic citation for his failure to yield to the right-of-way to the cyclist.

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Preventing Accidents Between Bicycles and Motor VehiclesWhen it comes to bicycles and motor vehicles on streets, Illinois calls itself a “Share the Road” state. Bicyclists have the same right to be on the road as drivers and must be treated with respect. A driver who injuries a bicyclist in an accident can be charged with a class 3 felony. A driver involved in an accident with a bicyclist may be at fault if the driver:

  • Does not give the bicyclist at least three feet of space when passing;
  • Recklessly drives towards a bicyclist;
  • Attempts to intimidate a bicyclist; or
  • Violates a driving law.

Shared Responsibility

A bicyclist can suffer catastrophic injuries if struck by a car and may be able to receive financial compensation if the driver is liable. However, the bicyclist’s personal injury case can be weakened if he or she was acting recklessly. Bicyclists must follow the same laws as drivers, but some break common road rules because bicycles are more maneuverable than cars and can squeeze through tighter spaces. A responsible driver may not be able to avoid an accident if the bicyclist is acting unpredictably. There are laws and safety guidelines you must follow to protect yourself when riding your bicycle alongside motor vehicles:

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