Dedicated Bike Accident Attorney for Roundrock, TX Residents
Experienced Bike Riding Personal Injury Lawyer for Roundrock
Have you or a loved one recently been involved in a cycling accident in Roundrock, Texas? Did you suffer injuries or property damage as a result of the incident? If so, you have rights and may be entitled to financial compensation. What you do immediately after a bike accident will determine whether you’re awarded compensation and how much you ultimately win.
That’s where Bill Shirer, Cyclist at Law, Roundrock’s board-certified personal injury trial lawyer comes in. For nearly 30 years, Bill has advocated on behalf of injured cyclists throughout Texas, and when you need experienced, knowledgeable, and dedicated legal representation, he’s here for you, too.
As an avid cyclist himself, Bill rides 5,000+ miles per year, regularly competes in races, and has a deep understanding of Roundrock’s cyclist and motorist laws. He understands how significantly a cycling accident can impact your life and is ready to ensure you get any compensation you’re rightly owed.
If you’d like to discuss your bike accident case and how Roundrock’s Cyclist at Law can help, please contact our office today to schedule a consultation.
Determining Liability for a Bicycle Accident
Who’s at fault when a cycling accident occurs? Depending on the circumstances surrounding the incident, liability can be difficult to determine. Although it’s possible that a single party is fully culpable for the accident, it’s also possible that more than one party holds some degree of liability.
Determining who’s at fault all comes down to the evidence involved in the case. And to properly gather and analyze that evidence and hold the liable party or parties responsible, the expertise of a knowledgeable Roundrock bike accident attorney is essential.
Although circumstances dictate liability, generally, a motorist who strikes a cyclist is at fault, at least in part, for the accident. Motorists have a duty of care to cyclists, whether they’re on a roadway, in a parking lot, on a sidewalk, or in other areas designated for cyclist use. That means vehicle operators must exercise care not to collide with a cyclist and make their presence known if the cyclist is unaware of their approach. When a motorist fails to exercise that duty of care, they can be deemed negligent, which is a critical factor in the determination of fault.
But like motorists, cyclists can also be deemed negligent, depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident and whether the cyclist was obeying Roundrock bike laws. If, for example, a cyclist runs a red light or fails to stop at a stop sign and that action contributed to the accident, the cyclist may be deemed negligent. In such a case, the cyclist could be held partially or fully liable for any injuries and/or property damage that resulted from the incident.
Bicycle manufacturers can also be held liable for accidents that result from faulty equipment. If a driver was negligent and was acting on behalf of their employer at the time of the accident, the employer can be found partially liable, too.
Liability is often a complicated determination and requires a thorough review of the evidence involved in the case. If you believe you may be owed damages, hiring an experienced bike accident attorney who can advocate on your behalf is, without a doubt, in your best interest.
Cyclist Laws in Roundrock, TX
As a cyclist, you have the same right to the road as a motorist. But, just as a motorist must follow Texas driving laws, you must abide by the state’s cycling laws. Not only must you follow these laws while operating your bicycle on Roundrock’s roadways but you must also abide by them when riding your bike in other areas.
If you’re involved in an accident and were not operating your bike according to Texas cycling laws, you may be found partially at fault for any injuries or property damage you sustained. To ensure you’re abiding by the law when you operate your bike, you must:
- Only operate your bicycle on cycling designated roadways, routes, and paths.
- Ride as near to the right side of the road as is feasible when a roadway does not feature a designated bike lane.
- Ride in a designated bike line on any roadways that feature such a lane.
- Follow the same rules of the road as motorists (obeying stop lights, traffic signs, etc.)
- Only ride into lanes designated for motorists when absolutely necessary.
- Not interfere with traffic flow when riding in motorist-designated lanes.
- Use appropriate arm and hand signals when stopping your bike or changing directions on the road (for example: preparing to turn left or right onto another roadway).
- Ride with at least one hand on the handlebars at all times.
- Ride single file if you’re riding with other cyclists on a motorist-designated roadway. You may ride more than one rider abreast only when riding in a designated bike lane.
- Not use any electronic devices while operating your bicycle.
- Not operate a bicycle under the influence of alcohol or other substances.
- Have a brake that’s able to leave skid marks on dry pavement.
- Have a read reflector light that’s visible from at least 300 feet away installed on the rear of your bike.
- Have a headlamp that’s visible from at least 500 feet away installed on the front of your bike.
- Yield to pedestrians when riding on sidewalks.
- Give audible notice of your presence as you approach other cyclists or pedestrians, no matter where you’re riding.
For more information about cycling laws in Roundrock, TX, see the Texas Department of Transportation’s Laws and Regulations FAQs. You can also check out the Austin Department of Transportation’s Bicycle and Micromobility Laws and Safety to learn more about cycling laws specific to the Austin metro area.
Car Driver’s Rights and Responsibilities to Cyclists
Many Texas drivers aren’t aware that cyclists have the same right to the road as motorists. As previously mentioned, car drivers have a duty of care to Roundrock cyclists. That means they must take care not to strike nearby cyclists, wherever they happen to be. Motorists should not pass bike riders until it’s safe to do so and should not maneuver around cyclists who are turning or using hand/arm signals to communicate an intent to change direction. Motorists must also give cyclists a minimum of three feet of clearance when passing or driving near them.
Vehicle drivers must also remain alert and focused while operating a vehicle and pay attention to any cyclists on the road who may be in their blind spot or other hard-to-see areas. Furthermore, drivers must exercise a duty of care to cyclists in parking lots and in other areas, such as on sidewalks. Ultimately, vehicle drivers are required to make sure they’re paying attention and taking the proper precautions to avoid an accident with a nearby cyclist.
Cyclists’ Rights and Responsibilities
As a cyclist in Roundrock, you also have a responsibility to be constantly vigilant while riding on roadways, trails, sidewalks, and in parking lots. Like vehicle drivers, you must also take the proper precautions to avoid an accident with a motorist, pedestrian, or another cyclist.
That means that you must share space with pedestrians or other cyclists when riding on a sidewalk or pathway where cyclists are allowed. You must also make others aware of your presence as you approach, either by verbally announcing yourself or signaling with a bell or other highly audible device.
In addition to staying vigilant and making others aware of your presence, you have a responsibility not to operate your bike on roadways that are hazardous for cyclists. Such roadways include freeways, expressways, highways, and interstates. Because the law prohibits cyclists from riding on the aforementioned roadways, you may be found liable if you’re involved in an accident on such a roadway.
What To Do After a Bicycle Accident
The aftermath of a cycling accident can feel overwhelming, especially if you or others suffer injuries as a result of the incident. But it’s imperative that you take the appropriate steps to handle the situation as calmly and logically as possible. What you do immediately following a bike accident will play a major role in the outcome of your case.
Immediately after a bike accident occurs, call the police. If you’re obviously injured and need prompt medical care, call 911 or seek medical attention. Even if you don’t believe you suffered any injuries as a result of the crash, it’s important that you undergo a thorough medical examination.
In some cases, injuries may not be apparent for hours or even days after an accident, but that doesn’t mean they can’t affect you long term. A comprehensive physical exam will reveal any potential physical issues resulting from the crash, and this evidence can be used in your case.
Other things to keep in mind immediately after a bike accident to ensure you get all the evidence you’ll need for your case include:
- Do not attempt to negotiate with the other party if there was one involved in the crash. Even if the other party admits fault, they can easily deny blame later on.
- Take photos or videos of the accident scene, any injuries, and any property damage. Ask someone else to take them if you cannot.
- If there are any witnesses, get their contact information. Ask someone else to gather this information if you cannot.
- After you’ve thoroughly documented every detail involved in the accident and received medical care, call a Roundrock bike accident attorney who can analyze your case.
Depending on the circumstances, you may be entitled to financial compensation, whether the accident involved a motorist, pedestrian, another cyclist, or even terrain. Hiring an experienced Roundrock accident attorney who can advocate for you is perhaps the best thing you can do to ensure you receive what you’re rightly owed.
Elements of a Bicycle Accident Claim
Filing a bicycle accident claim and receiving compensation for injuries, medical care, property damage, reduced earning capacity, lost wages, and pain and suffering is a complicated process. The legal process includes:
- Filing the claim itself
- Determining fault for the accident, whether fault lies with a single party or multiple parties
- Proving that you suffered damages as a result of the incident, which involves presenting evidence of property damage and medical records demonstrating injuries, mental health repercussions, and short- and long-term prognosis
- Providing proof of lost wages and reduced future earning capacity that result from the accident
- Providing proof of any aggravating factors involved in the accident, such as aggressive driving, electronic device usage, alcohol, other substances, etc.
Determining liability and an appropriate compensation amount depends on multiple variables. Having a Roundrock bike accident attorney who can gather evidence, interview witnesses, and negotiate with the opposing counsel or any insurance companies involved can expedite the claims process. Having an expert on your side can also help ensure you’re appropriately compensated for any accident-related damages you suffered.
Bicycle Accident Statistics in Roundrock
Data gathered by the city of Roundrock indicates that 20 bike crashes occurred within the city limits from 2013 to 2015. These statistics have been fairly consistent over the last several years, with an average of about seven to 10 bicycle crashes occurring each year inside Roundrock city limits.
Busy intersections and roadways have been a primary contributing factor to bike accidents in the Roundrock area. Furthermore, riders who fail to wear helmets often suffer more serious and lasting injuries than those who wear the proper protective gear while riding.
Best Bike Trails in Roundrock
Roundrock, Texas, is home to many excellent biking trails, the best of which include:
Ann and Roy Butler Hike and Bike Trail
- Austin to Manor Trail
- 183A Shared Use Path
- Barton Creek Greenbelt
- Brushy Creek Regional Trail
- Cottonwood Creek Trail
- Gilleland Creek Trail
- Chisholm Trail Crossing Park
Worst Areas for Bike Riding in Roundrock
According to Roundrock’s 2017 Transportation Master Plan Update, the five worst insections for cyclists within the city limits are:
- IH-35 Frontage and Louis Henna Blvd.
- A.W. Grimes Blvd. and Gattis School Rd.
- IH-35 Frontage and Hesters Crossing Rd.
- Round Rock Ave. and IH-35 Frontage Rd.
- Palm Valley Blvd. and A.W. Grimes Blvd
According to the same Transportation Master Plan Update, the five worst roadways for bicycle crashes in Roundrock are:
- US 79/Palm Valley
- University Blvd.
- Round Rock Ave.
- A.W. Grimes Blvd.
- Gattis School Rd.
How to Avoid a Bike Accident
Avoiding a bike accident may not be possible in some situations, but there are many things you can do to protect yourself on the roads, trails, and in other cyclist-designated areas in Roundrock. To stay safe, always remain vigilant while riding and wear the proper protective gear. Use mounted red and white lights on your bicycle to alert others to your presence and always announce yourself when approaching pedestrians and other cyclists. Follow the rules of the road and be watchful for motorists who may not be paying as much attention as they should. When approaching parked vehicles, be cautious — doors can swing open at any moment if there are people still inside the vehicle.
Aside from being cautious while riding, defensive driving can also help you avoid accidents while operating your bicycle. Use the appropriate hand signals when necessary and don’t assume a motorist will see you or even stop when they should at an intersection. Stay as visible as possible while operating your bike on roadways and do your best your stay out of vehicle operators’ blind spots even if you’re riding in a designated cyclist lane.
Contact the Roundrock Cyclist at Law
If you or someone you love has been involved in a cycling accident in or near Roundrock, Texas, don’t hesitate to contact Bill Shirer, Attorney at Law for help. Having a knowledgeable and experienced Roundrock bike accident attorney who can advocate on your behalf can help ensure you receive any financial compensation you’re rightly owed. Over the last three decades, Bill has helped hundreds of cyclists in their time of need, and when you need compassionate and dedicated legal representation, he’s here for you, too.