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Bicycle accident -- what bicyclists should know about liability

It is a well-known fact that in an accident between a motor vehicle and a bicycle, the cyclist usually loses. Nevertheless, Connecticut bicyclists are required to obey road rules and laws, just like drivers of motor vehicles. Both drivers and bicyclists have the duty to exercise reasonable care in order to avoid a bicycle accident.

Very often, negligence is the root cause of bicycle accidents. When courts have to decide who is liable in the case of a bicycle accident, an evaluation of who carries the blame for what is made. An assessment is done to establish if the motor vehicle driver was negligent, while possible contributory negligence of the cyclist is also considered.  

Driver negligence includes things like distraction or a reckless disregard for the safety of other road users by moving into bicycle lanes, speeding or disregarding traffic signs. However, cyclists must also ensure that they obey road signs, are aware of traffic and ride on the correct side of the road, particularly on a one-way street. In cases where the driver of a motor vehicle is found to have acted negligently or recklessly, a cyclist may choose to file a liability claim for any serious injuries suffered in an accident. However, if cyclist negligence contributed to the accident, it may impact any claim the cyclist may have.

A bicycle accident very often results in serious injuries. An evaluation of the circumstances surrounding the accident can be very complex, and consulting a Connecticut personal injury lawyer is typically a smart decision. A seriously injured bicycle accident victim, or his or her family in the event of a fatality, retains the right to seek financial relief through the civil court system when the evidence indicates that the injuries were caused by the negligence of another party.

Source: FindLaw, "Bicycle Accidents", Accessed on Dec. 23, 2015

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