FindLaw KnowledgeBasePublished: 2012-04-26
Bicyclists are at risk of devastating injury when traversing busy intersections and roads. For this reason, the law in Nevada requires bicyclists to walk, not ride, their bikes through crosswalks. Still, whatever precautions a bicyclist takes, accidents between cars and bikes do occur and can result in significant and varied types of injuries for the rider.
A recent accident involving a Las Vegas resident provides an example. On Jan. 10, Jeff Cochran was riding his bike across the busy intersection of Jones Boulevard and Lake Mead Boulevard when he was suddenly struck by a speeding SUV, according to eyewitness accounts. He was thrown from his bike, suffering a fractured skull and a shattered leg and foot. At University Medical Center, they pronounced Mr. Cochran comatose, and he has yet to regain consciousness. The police, after investigating, visited him in the hospital shortly after the accident and ticketed the unconscious man for failing to walk his bike through the crosswalk. The police are not pursuing the driver of the SUV.
Pleas from the injured bicyclist’s mother at a vigil later brought two eyewitnesses who questioned whether the bicyclist was entirely at fault for the accident. "I see all the cars stopping for the guy to come cross the street on his bike, and then out of nowhere, this dark-colored SUV goes to the intersection and hits him," one eyewitness told local CBS affiliate 8 News Now. It is not clear that walking the bicycle across the intersection would have prevented the accident.
Help With Medical Expenses
A fund has been set up to help pay for Mr. Cochran’s medical expenses, which are expected to be significant.
When a motor vehicle hits a pedestrian or cyclist, the individual struck may be able to receive compensation from the driver’s insurance or personal assets for lost wages, medical expenses and other costs. However, as the police investigation in this case shows, it is not always clear in the chaos of a severe accident exactly what caused the crash. Anyone injured in a car-bicycle accident should contact an experienced personal injury attorney who can investigate the circumstances and explore all options for receiving compensation.