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When you've been involved in a serious accident, you need legal representation you can trust. Since 1982, Steinberg Injury Lawyers have provided clients just like you with the compassionate and respectful legal representation they need to get their lives back on track after a motorcycle or bicycle accident. Our team of experienced motorcycle accident attorneys will work diligently to help you and your family secure the largest possible financial award in the shortest possible amount of time, so you can repair or replace your damaged motorcycle or bicycle, get the medical treatment you need to recover from your injuries, and even arrange for counseling, if necessary, to help you emotionally bounce back from your ordeal. 

Our clients can expect first-class, attentive service, regardless of which of our five Los Angeles area law offices they visit. Our Los Angeles motorcycle attorneys can even arrange to meet with you at the hospital or in your home if desired. We're eager to answer your questions and promise to keep you up to date with any and all developments in your case so you're not left in the dark. Also, because our attorneys work on a contingency basis, we don't charge you a dime until your case is resolved.

Bike and Motorcycle Accidents in Los Angeles Differ From Other Types of Motor Vehicle Accidents

Any motor vehicle accident has the potential to be serious, but, because motorcyclists and bicyclists lack the protective exoskeleton enjoyed by the driver and occupants of passenger vehicles, motorcycle and bicycle accidents tend to be particularly dangerous and are often deadly. Because motorcyclists and bicyclists are not well protected, injuries faced by these riders can be far more severe, requiring extensive – and expensive – treatments, long recovery periods, and even special mobility equipment.

Common Motorcycle Accident Injuries Can Include:

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  • Head injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain damage
  • Neck and spinal injuries
  • Road rash
  • Temporary or permanent muscle damage, including paralysis
  • Burst eardrum, often resulting in loss of hearing
  • “Biker's arm” or nerve damage
  • Leg injuries, including shattered bones and knees
  • Intra-abdominal injuries

Both bicyclists and motorcyclists are vulnerable, especially when on a busy highway or roads with poor visibility. There are always multiple factors in these kinds of cycle and car accidents, and cyclists can be severely hurt in a collision that didn’t even appear very serious.

Victims of a Motorcycle Accident May Also Experience Injuries Such As:

  • Bone fractures, especially in the forearms and wrists
  • Back injuries, such as bulged or ruptured discs
  • Fractured clavicle
  • Dislocated joints
  • Dental and jaw injuries

The severity of the injuries depends on the nature of the accident. Since motorcyclists are usually moving at higher speeds than bicyclists and in closer proximity to other vehicles, they are more likely to have severe injuries. However, bicyclists are still at risk and can be in very serious accidents.

Proper Safety Equipment Can't Prevent Every Bicycle and Motorcycle Accident in Los Angeles

California is one of the many states that require motorcyclists and bicyclists to conform to certain standards in the interest of safety. For example, California state law requires motorcyclists to wear a safety helmet “when riding on a motorcycle, motor-driven cycle, or motorized bicycle.” Additionally, California law mandates that motorcyclists have liability insurance coverage to help pay for property damage and bodily injury resulting from a crash in which they were at fault. Minimum liability insurance coverage must include:Safety equipment to help prevent motorcycle crash injuries

  • $15,000 for the injury or death of one person
  • $30,000 for the injuries or deaths of multiple people
  • $5,000 for property damage

California also has specific safety equipment requirements for bicyclists. For example, bicyclists under 18 years of age must wear a helmet that is properly fastened and meets minimum safety standards. Bicycles must also be equipped with the following safety equipment:

  • A white safety lamp that's visible from a distance of 300 feet
  • A red rear reflector that's visible from a distance of 500 feet when in the headlamps of a motor vehicle
  • A white or yellow reflector on each pedal, foot, or ankle, that's visible from the front and rear of the bicycle from 200 feet
  • White or yellow wheel reflectors visible from a distance of 300 feet

However, although these insurance requirements are important because motorcycle and bicycle accidents are often caused by other motorists—rather than the motorcyclist or bicyclists themselves.

California Safety Requirements for Motorcyclists:

Motorcyclists in California are required to wear a helmet that is in compliance with the US Department of Transportation. They must also adhere to the following safety requirements:

  • Rearview mirrors on the left and right side of the motorcycle
  • Handlebars that keep the rider’s hands no more than 6 inches above the height of their shoulders while seated
  • Functioning turn signals at the front and back of the motorcycle

California Safety Requirements for Bicyclists:

California also has specific safety equipment requirements for bicyclists. For example, bicyclists under 18 years of age must wear a helmet that is properly fastened and meets minimum safety standards. Bicycles must also be equipped with the following safety equipment:

  • A white safety lamp that's visible from a distance of 300 feet
  • A red rear reflector that's visible from a distance of 500 feet when in the headlamps of a motor vehicle
  • A white or yellow reflector on each pedal, foot, or ankle, that's visible from the front and rear of the bicycle from 200 feet
  • White or yellow wheel reflectors visible from a distance of 300 feet

Safety requirements such as these have saved many lives and can make all the difference in an accident. However, following these rules and regulations can’t guarantee a cyclist’s safety.

Common Types and Causes of Motorcycle and Bicycle Accidents

It's common to assume that each accident and its cause are unique but, as motorcycle accident attorneys, our lawyers see the same types of accidents again and again. For example, when it comes to motorcycle accidents, some of the most common types include:

Common Types of Los Angeles Motorcycle Accidents Include:

Wreckage from motorcycle crash accident with car causing Injury
  • Head-on collisions
  • Left-turn accidents
  • Rear-end collisions
  • T-bone or side-impact accidents

All of these accidents are serious and often result in severe injury or death. Because the motorcyclist is more exposed than the people in the car, they almost always experience worse injuries. While every motorcyclist should take every safety precaution possible, accidents still happen. 

Common Types of Los Angeles Bicycle Accidents Include:

  • Car door accidents
  • Crosswalk accidents
  • Left-turn accidents
  • Right-turn accidents
  • Rear-end collisions
  • Stop sign accidents

Common Causes of Accidents for Both Motorcycles and Bicycles Can Include:

Regardless, you shouldn't be forced to live with the aftermath of another motorist's recklessness. An experienced Los Angeles motorcycle accident attorney can help you determine if you're able to pursue compensation for damages sustained in an accident.

What to Do After a Motorcycle or Bicycle Accident

The cyclist is often the victim in motor vehicle accidents, and the injuries and damage can be serious and long-lasting. In order to get the compensation necessary to help them pay for the necessary medical treatment and property damage, there are a few steps the cyclist should take after the accident (if they are physically able):

Wait for the Police to Arrive

No matter how serious or minor the accident seems, it’s important to wait for the police so they can take statements from everyone involved and hear the cyclist’s side of the accident. Unfortunately, many accidents aren’t cut-and-dried and the person at fault is not always willing to take responsibility. This is why it’s important for the cyclist to tell the police their side of the story.

Collect Contact Information From the Driver and Any Witnesses

This information is important, especially if the cyclist decides to seek compensation from the driver. This gives other witnesses to the bicycle accident the opportunity to collaborate the story and increases the cyclist’s chance for restitution.

Document Your Injuries

One of the very first things a cyclist should do after an accident is to seek medical attention. It’s important to keep records of all the injuries acquired from the accident; these will help the injury lawyer make sure the victim receives the compensation they deserve.

Preserve Any Damage Caused by the Accident.

Don’t repair any damage done to the motorcycle or bicycle during the accident and keep the helmet and any clothing that was ruined. This evidence collaborates with the cyclist’s story and helps their injury lawyer get them compensation for their injuries.

Statute of Limitations in California Personal Injury Cases

California state law limits the amount of time a person has to file a personal injury case. These laws, known as the statute of limitations, let potential plaintiffs know exactly how long they have to file a lawsuit. In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is two years.

Plaintiffs must file their L. A. lawsuit within two years of the date the accident occurred, or risk forfeiting their ability to have their case heard.

Hiring a Los Angeles Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

When considering whether to pursue compensation for damages following a bicycle or motorcycle accident, having a consultation with an experienced Los Angeles motorcycle injury attorney or bicycle accident attorney can make all the difference. At Steinberg Injury Lawyers, our accomplished motorcycle & bicycle accident attorneys can review your case, answer your questions, and advise you on the best way to proceed. Our long track record of helping accident victims speaks for itself—call us today to schedule a free initial consultation to discuss how we can help you.

Peter Steinberg
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Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney Since 1982