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Facial Injuries After Bicycle Accidents in California

Paceline Law Bicycle Injury Lawyer represents anyone that’s been hurt in a bicycle accident in California. It can leave you facing any number of injuries, but given the nature of most accidents, your face is particularly vulnerable. By working with my firm, you can take advantage of your legal options. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Should You Hire a Lawyer?

When you’re hurt in a bicycle accident, regardless of where or how, it can be very alarming. But with a facial injury, there’s really no change in what your legal options are. So, you may be wondering if you should hire a lawyer. The answer, as in any other situation, depends on your needs. If your injuries are only minor, you probably don’t have to worry about a claim. But, if your facial injuries are more severe, my firm can help you.

We’ll approach your case with tailored advice and guidance, making sure you have what you need to put together a strong claim. Better yet, we work on a contingency-fee basis, meaning there’s no upfront cost to working with us.

Who’s Liable For Your Injuries in a Bicycle Accident?

The starting point of any injury claim after a bicycle accident is figuring out who’s liable for your injuries. Finding out what caused the accident is important for deciding who’s liable, but it’s not always easy. To prove someone was at fault, you usually need to show they didn’t do what they should have to keep you safe and that led to your injuries.

This, obviously, brings in a lot of potential parties, including:

  • Drivers
  • Other bicyclists
  • Local or state government agencies
  • Bicycle manufacturers
  • Construction or maintenance crews

Establishing who’s at fault is crucial because it determines who’s responsible for paying for your facial injuries and other losses from the accident.

How Do Facial Injuries Happen in a Bicycle Accident?

It’s not very difficult to see how facial injuries happen during a typical bicycle accident. Your face, unfortunately, lacks protection from impact. This is true whether the impact involves your face:

  • Hitting pavement after you’re thrown over the handlebars
  • Contacting the outside of the vehicle or some other stationary object

Worse yet, you’re often traveling at speed, meaning the impact force is greater. All of this adds up to facial injuries, but specifically, you could be dealing with any of the following:

  • Fractures – These can occur in the bones of your face, like your nose, cheekbones (zygomatic bones), jaw (mandible), or the bones surrounding your eye sockets (orbital bones).

  • Cuts and bruises – Many bike accidents result in cuts and bruises. They can range from minor cuts and scrapes to deeper lacerations that will need stitches.

  • Facial scarring – Severe facial trauma can lead to permanent disfigurement, including scarring. These frequently need reconstructive surgery.

  • Dental injuries – Bike accidents frequently cause damage to your teeth, which can be painful and require extensive dental surgery.

  • Eye injuries – Trauma to the face can result in injuries to your eyes. This can include corneal abrasions, orbital fractures, or even more severe injuries that impact your vision.

  • Nasal injuries – Your nose is particularly vulnerable in bike accidents and can suffer fractures, lacerations, or dislocation.

What are your legal damages?

Bike accidents often result in the above injuries to your face. However, each accident is different, with some being more severe. This leads to extensive medical treatment and expenses, causing additional financial, physical, and emotional strain. Legally speaking, these are your “damages” that you can recover in your injury claim.

Whether you decide to file an insurance claim or lawsuit, you can potentially recover:

  • Medical expenses and treatment costs, including hospital visits and surgeries
  • Lost income or earning potential from missed work
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of quality of life or companionship
  • Repair/replacement costs for any damaged property

Remember, no matter how bad your injuries are, you have to file your claim within two years of the date of the accident. If you don’t, you will miss out on recovering these damages.

Can You Protect Yourself From Facial Injuries in a Bicycle Accident?

The best way to protect your face and rest of your body in a bicycle accident is not to be in one in the first place. Unfortunately, this is often out of your hands. So, it then becomes up to you to do what you can to make sure that any impact to your face is either as small as possible or is reduced. You can do this by:

  • Wearing a helmet and other protective equipment – While helmets primarily protect the head, they can also provide some protection to the face by reducing the force of impact in an accident. You can also wear additional protective gear, like a full-face helmet, goggles, or a face shield to provide extra protection for your face.

  • Follow the rules – If you follow traffic rules and ride carefully, you can lower the chance of accidents and hurting your face.

  • Increase your visibility – Put lights, reflectors, and wear bright clothes so drivers can see you better and you’re less likely to get hit.

  • Pay attention – Pay attention to what’s happening around you while you’re riding. Don’t get distracted by texting or using headphones.

  • Use bike lanes – Ride in designated bike lanes or paths when you can. It keeps you away from cars and safer. If you do have to ride on the road, stay as far to the right as possible.

Even if you follow these tips, accidents can still happen. But these tips can really lower the chances of a bike accident in the first place. Still, if you are in one, there are certain things you need to do.

What You Should Do If You’re in a Bicycle Accident

Suffering a facial injury in a bike accident doesn’t necessarily change the things you should do afterward. Here’s what you should do:

  • Document everything – After the accident, note all the details such as where and when it happened, the weather, and road conditions. Use your phone to take pictures of the accident scene, your injuries, and any damage to your bike.

  • Collect witness information – If anyone saw the accident, get their contact details and ask them to write down what they saw. Their statements can support your case.

  • Visit a doctor – Even if you feel fine, see a doctor and get checked out to take care of any immediate facial injuries. Also, get assistance from the ambulance at the scene. Keep a record of all medical visits, treatments, and bills.

  • Keep track of expenses – Save receipts for anything related to the accident, such as medical bills, bike repairs, or travel expenses.

  • Inform your insurance – Inform your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Provide them with all the necessary information and keep copies of any communication.

  • Follow medical advice – Follow your doctor’s advice for treatment of your injuries and your recovery. Not following their advice could harm your case.

Facial injuries aren’t uncommon in most bicycle accidents, but their effects can last well past the initial accident. So, it’s important to do whatever you can to protect your health, safety, and potential claim. We can help you through this process, as well.

Dedicated Support For Facial Injury Victims in California Bicycle Accidents

Facial injuries after a bicycle accident are extremely tough to deal with. Not only does it give you health problems, but can even change the way you look. At Paceline Law Bicycle Injury Lawyer, my firm will be there to provide you with dedicated legal support and guidance. Don’t face these challenges alone. Contact us today to set up a free consultation.