Are You Looking for a New York Bicycle Accident Lawyer?
The NYC Bicycle Accident Attorneys at Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman and Mackauf have been defending bicyclists' rights since 1919. They are familiar with the unique challenges under the New York Law faced by injured cyclists or by the families who lost a loved one in a bike accident. Call us at 212-943-1090 for a free consultation.
Our bike accident attorneys are based in Manhattan and handle bicycle accident cases in New York metro,NY State and NJ. Some of the lawsuits we handle include:
- Cyclists struck by bus claims
- Cyclists struck by truck claims
- Cyclists struck by car claims
- Cyclists struck by taxi or limo claims
- Cyclists doored claims
- E-bike accident claims
- Citi-Bike accident claims
- Bike Messenger crash claims
- Scooter and E-Scooter Accident claims
- Hit and Run bike Accidents claims
- Bike Lane Accidents claims
- How Can an Attorney Help If I Was Injured in a Bicycle Accident in NY?
- Why Choose the NYC Bicycle Accident Attorneys at Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman and Mackauf?
- What are the Most Common Bicycle Accident Lawsuits in New York?
- Are They Specific Laws Regulating Bicyclists in New York City and NY State?
- What Type of Bicycle Accident Injuries Can Be Prevented by Wearing a Helmet?
- What are the Most Common Bicycle Accident Injuries?
- How Many People are Getting Killed or Injured in Bicycle Accidents in New York City?
Our NYC bicycle accident lawyers recently settled a case for a woman on a bicycle who was injured after being struck by a bus in New York. The video was obtained from the defendant bus company during discovery.
Persons injured in bicycle accidents face unique legal challenges under the laws of New York which require specific knowledge and experience as it concerns the rights of bicyclists. Our New York bicycle accident lawyers have years of experience representing victims of bike accidents and their families in all 5 boroughs of New York City and NY State. Our attorneys are specialized in handling catastrophic bicycle accident lawsuits and have recovered multi million dollars settlements and verdicts for their clients. Our firm was featured in the New York Law Journal’s Top 25 New York Verdicts of 2014 for obtaining the highest award for a verdict in a motor vehicle accident involving a bicycle. GGCRBHS&M was also named Law Firm of the Year Personal Injury Litigation in 2013 and a Tier 1 firm in New York City for Personal Injury Litigation - Plaintiff every year after this by U.S. News – Best Lawyers ® “Best Law Firms”.
Our personal injury attorneys advocate for their clients' full financial recovery through detailed, meticulous preparation for trial. They enjoy a national reputation as "counsel to the profession" and have been trusted by their peers as well as by bike activists and avid cyclists such as Mary Beth Kelly, a member of the Board of Directors of Transportation Alternatives and a founding member of Families for Safe Streets to handle their case or the case of their loved ones.
Recent bicycle accident cases handled by our bicycle accident attorneys include:
- $ 8,570,000 verdict for a 36 year old bicyclist who suffered personal injury after being struck by a bus in NYC.
- $5,500,000 settlement on behalf of a bicyclist struck by a New York police car which was pursuing him.
- $5,000,000 recovery in New York County for the widow of a doctor struck and killed by an NYPD tow truck. The decedent was riding his bicycle on the Green Way on the West Side when the truck made a right turn on to the path and crashed into him. See below video to learn more about this case.
- $4.6 million verdict for the family of Marylin Dershowitz, a retired Manhattan Supreme Court special referee who was killed by a postal truck while riding her bike in Downtown Manhattan. Her husband Nathan Z Dershowitz of Dershowitz, Eiger and Adelson trusted our firm and was extremely pleased by the result.
- $2,050,000 verdict for a bicyclist who suffered pelvic injuries and urethral injuries after being struck by a NY MTA bus
- $1,400,000 settlement for a bicyclist who was struck by a bus and suffered fractures of her left clavicle, left thumb, ribs and pelvis.
- $1,200,000 verdict for a woman who, while riding her bike, suffered a lower back injury (herniated disc) after being struck by a car.
The majority of bicycle accident cases in New York involve:
- Contact with a motor vehicle that failed to yield the right-of-way at an intersection
- Collision with a vehicle which unexpectedly turned into the path of a cyclist, often making left turns in the path of an oncoming cyclist
- Motorist overtaking a bicyclist, often by misjudging the space needed to safely pass.
- Motorists, including trucks and buses, causing bicycle accidents by failing to share the road, forcing cyclists off the road or into a collision
- Negligent motorist opening a car door directly into a cyclist's path, an all-too-common scenario in New York
Bicycle accidents also occur due to other factors which are often unique to the operation of a bicycle. They often occur due to environmental factors such as:
- Defective roadway design or maintenance,
- Impaired visibility
- Poor road and path conditions, including potholes, road debris, maintenance problems, and even dog attacks.
Another scenario somewhat unique to New York is that of a pedestrian struck and injured by a bicycle messenger or delivery personAre They Specific Laws Regulating Bicyclists in New York City and NY State?
Bicyclists must observe the same rules of the road and be accorded the same rights as the operators of all other vehicles pursuant to New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law § 1231. However, a bicyclist is considered a pedestrian under the No-Fault Law in New York and is, thus, entitled to No-Fault coverage under most circumstances.
Bicyclists are also subject to various helmet laws codified in New York Vehicle and Traffic Law §1238. In New York, a child under the age of one year is prohibited from being a passenger on a bicycle. Passengers and operators under fourteen years of age are required to wear protective headgear. All other bicyclists are not required to wear a helmet.What Type of Bicycle Accident Injuries Can Be Prevented by Wearing a Helmet?
It is important to fully understand what the helmet is designed to protect. For an impact at speeds in excess of 15-20 miles per hour, a bicycle helmet is less likely to prevent a serious head or brain injury. Under US standards bicycle helmets are tested in 2 meter drops that achieve about 14 miles per hour (22.5 kph) on a flat anvil. In a famous article in the New England Journal of Medicine, it was determined that wearers of bicycle helmets had an 85% reduction in their risk of head injury and an 88% reduction in their risk of brain injury. A Case-Control Study of the Effectiveness of Bicycle Safety Helmets, Robert S. Thompson, M.D., Frederick P. Rivara, M.D., M.P.H., and Diane C. Thompson, M.S. N Engl J Med 1989;320:1361-1367, May 25, 1989.
Minor head injuries are usually the result of linear acceleration of the skull by impact with another object. Bicycle helmets can help prevent head injuries by reducing and spreading this force. More serious injuries, on the other hand, are often as a result of angular or rotational acceleration, which leads to diffuse axonal injury (DAI) and subdural hematoma (SDH). These are the most common brain injuries sustained by road crash victims that result in death or chronic intellectual disablement. Bicycle helmets are not designed to mitigate rotational injuries, and research has not shown them to be effective in doing so. Curnow WJ. The efficacy of bicycle helmets against brain injury. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 2003,35:287-292What are the Most Common Bicycle Accident Injuries?
Bicycles are a common means of transportation, recreation and exercise throughout New York. Bicycles offer very little in terms of protection from the hazards confronting a bicyclist on the roadways of New York. This can, and often does, lead to severe and catastrophic injuries to bicyclists when an accident occurs. Unfortunately, a large percentage of persons injured in bicycle accidents are children. Some of the most common injuries sustained in a bicycle accident are:
- Head injuries often resulting in skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries
- Facial injuries resulting in facial fractures such as jaw fractures or broken bones
- Broken bones in the legs, the arms, the shoulders and the neck
- Chest trauma such as rib fractures or abdomen injuries such as rupture of the spleen, pancreatic trauma or other internal injuries.
According to the most recent statistics published by the NYPD, 3 cyclists died in traffic accidents in New York City in July and 1 in August compared to respectively 3 and 0 for the same months a year earlier. After an excellent beginning of the year with zero bicycle accident fatalities recorded for the 4 first months of 2022, bicycle accidents fatalities increased again as soon as the weather got warmer. So far from the beginning of the year until August 31st, 9 people were killed in bicycle accidents in New York city compared to respectively 7, 10 and 18 during the same period of 2021, 2020 and 2019. Despite gradual improvements in the city infrastructures to protect cyclists, fatalities remain on a rising trend. More needs to be done, especially outside of Manhattan.
Bicycle accident injuries also remain on a rising trend. After a jump above 600 monthly injuries during the summer months of 2020 when a lot of newbies decided to switch their metro card for a bike lock, bicycle accident injuries went back below 500 during the months of July and August. At this time newbies had learned to ride or had given up on riding a bike in the city, but the borders were still closed to foreign visitors. This summer as tourists got back in town and the city was globally busier and recovering more people were injured in bicycle accidents. Respectively 527 and 530 bicycle accident injuries were reported to the NYPD in July and August 2022.RECORD NUMBER OF BICYCLE ACCIDENT FATALITIES AND INJURIES IN NYC DURING Q1 2023
According to the most recent data released by the NYPD, a record number of 9 cyclists were killed in crashes in New York City during Q1 2023. Among those who died, 7 were riding an electric bike and 2 others were riding a regular bicycle. Among those seven people who were riding an e-bike, 4 died in crashes that did not involved any other vehicle. Among the 5 fatal crashes involving vehicles, 3 cyclists were killed in crashes with trucks and 2 in crashes with SUVs.
The number of bicycle accident injuries also reached a record high during Q1 2023, with 809 cyclists injured in crashes compared to 649 for the same period a year earlier. A particularly warm winter might have been a factor in the unusual high number of people injured in bicycle accidents during the first 3 months of the year.5 OF THE 9 FATAL NYC BICYCLE ACCIDENTS DURING Q1 TOOK PLACE IN THE FIRST TWO MONTHS OF THE YEAR
According to the statistics published by the NYPD, 2 cyclists died in traffic accidents in New York City in February 2023, and 3 in January 2023, compared to 0 and 0 for the same months a year earlier. These numbers are concerning because February and January are typically months during which the number of bicycle accident fatalities is extremely low. Only twice since Vision Zero started in 2013 has a record number of 5 bicycle accident fatalities been recorded during the first two months of the year: in 2019 and in 2023.
Among those who died were:
- 62-year-old Tamara Chuchi Kao who was killed by a turning cement truck while riding a CitiBike in Astoria,
- Sarah Schick, a 37-year-old mother who was killed by a truck while riding a e-CitiBike in a dangerous area of Gowanus, Brooklyn,
- James Giambalvo, a cyclist who was fatally struck by a SUV while riding his bike in Staten Island.
The number of bicycle accident injuries was also high last February, with 231 people injured in bicycle accidents in New York City during that month, compared to 233 in January and 194 in February 2022. This number is the second-highest number of bicycle accident injuries in New York City in February. A record number of 232 bike injuries was recorded in February 2019.
Both bicycle accidents deaths and injuries remain on a growing trend.NYC DOT STUDY SHOWS 16 PEOPLE RIDING E-MOBILITY DEVICES AND 15 PEOPLE RIDING REGULAR BICYCLE DIED IN CRASHES IN NYC LAST YEAR
According to data provided by the NYC DOT, in 2022, 15 cyclists and 16 people riding other e-mobility devices such as e-scooters and electric mopeds died in crashes in NYC. Among the 15 bicyclist fatalities, 6 occurred in Brooklyn, 4 in the Bronx, 3 in Manhattan, and 2 in Queens. Among the 16 other e-mobile device fatalities, 8 occurred in Brooklyn, 4 in the Bronx, 3 in Manhattan, and 1 in Queens.
According to the same data, Brooklyn was the borough where cyclists and other e-mobility users sustained the most injuries. 1,879 cyclists and 920 other e-mobility riders were injured in Brooklyn, compared to 1,394 and 366 in Manhattan, 811 and 554 in Queens, 521 and 342 in the Bronx, and 71 and 21 in Staten Island.
The bicycle accident attorneys at Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom Hershenhorn & Mackauf advocate for our clients' full recovery through detailed, meticulous preparation for trial. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed in a bicycle accident please contact our firm at 212-943-1090 for a free consultation.
Disclaimer: Please be advised that the results achieved in any given case depend upon the exact facts and circumstances of that case. Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf cannot guarantee a specific result in any legal matter. Any testimonial or case result listed on this site is based on an actual legal case and represents the results achieved in that particular case, and does not constitute a guarantee, warranty or prediction of the outcome of any other legal matter.