Driving while impaired remains a significant problem in cites across the United States. San Jose, like fellow Bay Area cities such as Oakland and San Francisco, has suffered a 43 percent rise in DUI fatalities since 2010. This figure is higher than the national average and drivers in San Jose and the Bay Area are also above average in percentage of drivers who have a DUI on their record (1.7% compared to 1.36) and DUI fatalities are above the national average in the Bay Area by about 2%. This creates a higher risk that San Jose cyclists will encounter a drunk driver
What are the Risks to Cyclists of Drunk Drivers
A driver impaired with alcohol has three significant problems that lead to crashes: First their reaction time is slowed. This means that when they see a danger, they are much less likely to be able to avoid it. Second, their ability to reason is impaired, which partially explains why they got behind the wheel in the first place. However, they also make poor decisions which further increases the likelihood that a crash will occur. Finally, the more impaired, the less control they have over their motor skills which is why drunk drivers weave all over the road. A study done by the National Library of Medicine, the higher the blood alcohol rating the more severe the injuries are sustained by the victim.
What Damages are Typical of a DUI and Cyclist Crash?
A cyclist is not protected the same as a motorist. Also, the weight of a car (average about 4,000 pounds) adds to the damage done to the cyclist. This makes even a small impact a risk for serious injury. Some of the typical DUI driver and cyclist injuries are:
- Traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries
- Multiple fractures
- Organ damage
- Nerve damage
- Severe dental injuries
- Severe skin scrapes, lacerations and punctures
Once a cyclist is struck and injured by an impaired motorist, there are damages the victim receives that go beyond medical bills incurred from the injury. Some of these are:
- Future medical and rehabilitation needs.
- Past lost earnings and earnings reasonably expected to be lost in the future.
- Any permanent disfigurement.
- Any permanent disability.
- Pain and suffering.
- Loss of a normal life.
- Funeral and burial expenses in the event of a wrongful death.
Bay Area Bicycle Law
After being seriously injured in a bicycle accident with a drunk driver, a cyclist should focus on his or her medical attention first. Eventually, the focus will shift to medical bills, lost wages and other types of economic loss sustained by the incident. Our knowledgeable and aggressive California bicycle accident lawyers are extensively experienced in protecting the rights of injury victims. We’ll thoroughly investigate every detail of your case and leave no stone unturned.
There is no fee to retain us either because we take DUI injury cases on a contingency fee basis. If you were bicycling, and you were injured as a result of the recklessness of a drunk driver, your crash was probably perfectly preventable. Contact us by phone or email right away.
Start putting someone on your side, call us at (415) 466 8717 or click here to contact us online. If you still wonder if we’re the right firm for you or even if you need an attorney, read this this for help answering these questions.