The community of Canmore expects its drivers to obey local traffic laws, exhibit caution behind the wheel, and operate their vehicles in consideration of other road-users’ safety. Unfortunately, despite this expectation, many bicycle accidents continue to occur. Recently, serious cycling injuries have spiked across the province, leading to a year-over-year increase in emergency room visits of 48%.
Owing to bicycle riders’ inherent vulnerability on the roads and their lack of protective measures, collisions with motor vehicles often have devastating repercussions. When drivers fail to consider the potential consequences of their actions, innocent lives can be lost as a result of the driver’s negligence.
According to the province’s Traffic Safety Act, all motor vehicle operators owe a duty of care to all other road-users – including cyclists. Failure to uphold this duty of care is considered driver negligence.
In bicycle accident cases in Alberta, there is a reverse onus of proof on the at-fault motorist. Motorists are automatically presumed to be negligent if they are involved in a collision wherein a cyclist or pedestrian is injured.
If two motor vehicles had been involved in a collision, the injured party would be required to prove that their injuries were caused by the other driver’s negligence in order to recover compensation. However, in cases where a motor vehicle strikes a bicycle, the motorist is automatically presumed to be responsible for the accident.
However, negligent drivers and their insurance providers still have the opportunity to try establishing that the injured cyclist was “contributorily negligent.” That means a negligent driver or insurer could try proving that the bicycle accident victim’s own wrongful actions were partially responsible for the collision.
If a negligent driver is able to prove that the cyclist they struck with their vehicle was contributorily negligent and, therefore, partially at-fault for the collision, the injured party may only be entitled to a reduced amount of damages, rather than the maximum amount they would otherwise be owed. That is why seeking legal assistance is so important, even if it appears as though the driver’s negligence was solely to blame for the incident.
Our Canmore bicycle accident lawyers have experience fighting on behalf of injured cyclists, and standing up for the rights of people who are simply trying to pursue the compensation they are rightfully owed. Our bicycle accident lawyers serving Canmore are familiar with the tactics often used to reduce the settlements offered to injured cyclists, and do our best to ensure they are granted fair compensation for their injuries. To speak with our Canmore bicycle accident lawyers, contact us today and schedule your free initial consultation.
During a free initial consultation on your case, our bicycle accident serving Canmore lawyers can review the circumstances of your collision with you and offer personalized legal feedback about courses of action you may be entitled to pursue. To discuss your options and learn more about working with our Canmore bicycle accident lawyers, call today and take advantage of your cost-free, no-obligation first meeting.
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