Understanding Liability After Being Rear Ended on a Bicycle in New Mexico
Riding a bicycle is both good exercise and a great way to get around the city to avoid issues with parking. Making people cycle competitively or in groups for exercise or camaraderie. Others simply enjoy a nice and quiet bike ride through the neighborhood. While many times this is safe, other times it is not. Unfortunately, there are many bicycle accidents in New Mexico causing serious personal injuries or wrongful death. In fact, New Mexico is one of the most dangerous states for bicyclists in the United States. It commonly ranks second highest in bicycle deaths throughout the country, behind only Florida. One of the most common accidents is when an individual is rear ended on a bicycle in New Mexico.
Even if it is a simple tap, being rear ended on a bicycle could result in serious personal injuries. This is because a bicyclist does not have any protections such as a seat belt, air bag, or even just the shell of a car around the rider. A simple tap from a vehicle has a lot of momentum which could launch a rider into the ground to suffer serious injuries or wrongful death. Make times a rider does not even see the danger and is unable to brace himself or herself for the collision. This can cause even worse personal injuries if a victim is unable to protect his or her head in a collision.
Liability for Being Rear Ended on a Bicycle in New Mexico
A defendant who rear ends a bicyclist is likely at fault for the collision for at least two reasons. First, all motorists must exercise reasonable care in the use or operation of their motor vehicle. This includes avoiding collisions with other vehicles, pedestrians, and other objects on or around the roadway. Colliding with a bicycle is usually a lack of reasonable care, especially if it is at a stop sign or while a defendant is overtaking a bicycle. This could result in very serious personal injuries or the wrongful death of an innocent person.
Second, New Mexico Statutes 66-7-318 provides that no motorist shall follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent. A motorist must be able to avoid striking another vehicle from the rear. While the statute says “vehicle,” the vehicle and traffic law also defines a bicyclist to be included within that definition. Courts have also interpreted a vehicle to include a bicyclist. This means that a bicyclists hit from behind may be able to use the violation of this statute to help prove liability.
Hit from Behind While on a Bicycle? Ask Our New Mexico Personal Injury Lawyers for Help
Our experienced New Mexico personal injury lawyers at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. handle many different types of personal injury accidents, including bicycle accidents. When an individual is rear ended on a bicycle in New Mexico, call for a free consultation from our law firm to learn how we can help protect your rights to compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, lost future earnings, loss of consortium, and other damages. Call the Caruso Law Offices, P.C., to learn more how we can help you and your family by dialing (505) 883-5000 for a FREE appointment.
We handle causes throughout New Mexico, including Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Roswell, Cuervo, Rio Rancho, Clovis, Farmington, Hobbs, Albuquerque where our office is located, and anywhere else throughout New Mexico. Please call to schedule for FREE appointment by dialing (505) 883-5000 or contact us through our website’s easy to use and convenient contact box available here.