Despite taking all necessary precautions, many cyclists are tragically injured in collisions involving another vehicle. According to national statistics, more than 900 cyclists are killed each year. Just last week, a Botetourt County woman was sentenced to 12 months in jail, with 11 months suspended, for hitting and killing a 39-year-old woman in a bicycle accident earlier this year.

For accident victims who do survive, many of them are left with serious injuries that leave them with long-term or permanent disabilities.

Common Injuries

There are several factors that determine the type and extent of the injuries a cyclist can sustain in a crash:

  • Whether the cyclist was wearing a helmet
  • The speed of the parties involved
  • Whether motor vehicles were involved
  • The type of impact
  • The condition of the road or trail where the accident occurred

With nothing to protect them from the impact of a vehicle hitting them, cyclists are especially vulnerable to injury. Some of the most common injuries sustained by cyclists include:

  • Broken bones, especially arms and wrists
  • Scrapes, lacerations, and road rash
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Spinal cord damage
  • Paralysis
  • Nerve damage
  • Joint dislocation
  • Facial injuries, such as a broken nose or jaw, chipped teeth, and scarring
  • Head and neck injuries
  • Death

 Symptoms

While some cyclists may think that they do not need emergency care after an accident, there is always a risk that they sustained an injury but have delayed symptoms, such as head trauma or internal injuries. This is why you should always seek out medical attention, even if you think you are fine. After an accident, bike accident victims should keep an eye out for the following symptoms:

  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Double vision
  • Severe headache
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Neck or back pain
  • Unusual swelling

If left untreated, injuries that present with these types of symptoms may prove deadly. For instance, headaches and double vision may represent a hematoma or bleeding in the brain, while persistent neck or back pain may be indicative of a fracture or herniated disc.

Damages

Depending on the severity of the injury, cyclists may be forced to undergo painful surgeries and rehabilitative treatments. Many require physical therapy and months of forced immobility while bones knit and heal. These treatments are expensive and can quickly overwhelm a victim’s finances.

Fortunately, if the injured party can establish that the accident was caused by another person’s negligence, he or she may be able to obtain compensation for medical expenses and lost wages. Other damages, including pain and suffering and permanent disability, may also be compensable. While a victim’s health may never be wholly restored, obtaining compensation in a Virginia bike accident claim for the losses associated with the accident is an important step on the road to recovery.

Contact a Skilled Virginia Injury Attorney Today

If you or a loved one were injured in a bicycle or any other type of vehicle accident, call Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our dedicated Virginia bicycle accident attorneys

It is critical not to delay contacting our office because Virginia injury laws have strict rules regarding how long you have to file your personal injury claim. If the statute of limitations expires, you will be unable to collect financial damages for any medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, or any other losses you or your family may be entitled to.

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