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There is no question more people are biking and bike commuting than ever before in the Greater Boston area including Cambridge just across the Charles River.  To get an idea of just how the trend is moving, we can look to data published by the City of Cambridge, which shows 4 percent of residents commuted by bike in 1990.  Today the number has risen to high as 9 percent and this is only expected to continue.

bike crash lawyerTo meet the needs and protect the safety of the the growing cyclist community, there have been a lot of changes including the addition of bike lanes, some with physical barriers, and there have been renewed efforts to educate motorists on the laws pertaining to bike safety.  Unfortunately, there still needs to be a lot of work in both of these area as bike riders are hit by cars on a regular basis, and many drivers do not understand bike riders have the same rights as a vehicle driver while on the streets and roads of Massachusetts. Continue reading

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A civil lawsuit following a Boston bike accident is a case designed to obtain compensation for a plaintiff with respect to any injuries suffered as a result of defendant’s negligence. In many cases, civil defendants who are at fault in causing an accident will be given a civil motor vehicle infraction, but will not be charged with a crime.  In some cases, where there are allegations of operation to endanger or drunk driving, there will be criminal charges filed in addition to any civil personal injury lawsuit.  These criminal cases, or the lack thereof, do not control a subsequent civil case, but they may have an effect on the outcome.

Recent Tension Between Boston Bike Advocates and Prosecutors

truck accidentsAccording to a recent news article from the Boston Globe, a group of bike safety advocates in Boston are blaming the driver of a truck for his alleged involvement in a fatal bike crash, but prosecutors are declining to file criminal charges.  This fatal Boston bike crash occurred in 2015.  Prosecutors and police have said they believe the Boston bike rider who died in this accident was at-fault, and thus no criminal charges are warranted. Continue reading

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Boston may soon be the site of a Bike Share War, and there could be serious repercussions for the pace of Boston’s cycling infrastructure growth.bike injury lawyer

The City of Boston founded the Boston Bikes program in the fall of 2007, with Hubway launching in the summer of 2008 with 600 bicycles and 60 stations citywide. The number of bikes and stations have expanded since then, with the city now reporting by the end of 2018, there will 245 stations and more than 2,400 bicycles. Boston bike injury attorneys at BikeAttorney.com recognize this has been a huge investment for the city and taxpayers, and it provides incentive for city leaders to continue investing in complete streets that incorporate more bike-friendly features, giving riders more ease and confidence.

However, there are a number of businesses now vying to capitalize on Boston’s growing bicycle enthusiasm. As The Boston Globe reported in October, several firms offering on-the-spot bicycle rentals in Greater Boston have begun trying to work their way into the market. One of the unique advantages these companies have over Hubway is they don’t need fixed docking stations. Instead, renters can park and lock the rental bicycle virtually anywhere.

This so-called “dockless technology” has become wildly popular in China, and it’s rapidly spreading to cities like Boston. The problem, as noted by Boston Bike Attorney Andrew Fischer, is that it may ultimately hinder Hubway’s growth model – which may be bad for cyclists in the long-term.  Continue reading

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Watching the agonizing frame-by-frame the moments before, during and after the 2015 deadly bicycle crash that killed Dr. Anita Kurmann as she cycled along Massachusetts Avenue is gut-wrenching. What’s especially horrendous, though, is that the driver of the tractor-trailer that brazenly mowed her down has not been criminally charged, despite obvious violation of the law. Boston police instead shockingly concluded Kurmann herself was to blame for failure to recognize the truck was preparing to turn.bicycle attorney

Any good bike injury lawyer knows this conclusion is wrong. It ignores the fact that the truck driver had a legal obligation to stay alert to his surroundings – including the presence of vulnerable road users – and turn safely.

Lead bike attorney Andrew Fischer of BikeAttorney.com was part of a team of dedicated advocates that recently drafted an in-depth analysis of the Kurmann case, submitted to the district attorney’s office with an urgent request for further review. This report scrutinized point-by-point, second-by-second how this crash unfolded, establishing the trucker’s overt failure to adhere to MGL Chapter 90 Section 14, which barred him overtaking a bicyclist to make a right turn, “unless the turn can be made at a safe distance from the bicyclist at a speed that is reasonable and proper.”

The driver’s conduct went beyond simply a breach of duty to use reasonable care (the standard for negligence). It was criminal. As the analysis clearly showed, the trucker’s violation of the law regarding right turns when bicyclists are on the right lays ample foundation for a charge of negligent homicide. The evidence further supports a probable cause finding for charges of involuntary manslaughter, pursuant to MGL c. 265 s. 13, operating to endanger, and reckless driving – all based on his glaring violation of MGL Chapter 90 Section 14. Continue reading

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Boston bike crash victims of hit-and-run accidents face unique challenges in recovering damages.  While these cases are known as hit-and-run crashes, they are legally referred to as leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident involving personal injury.  The issue is who will pay damages suffered by the plaintiff in the event he or she is injured by a hit-and-run driver who is not identified.

bicycle injury lawyerWhen you are riding on a bike on the streets of Boston, no matter how careful you may be, there is always a chance of being involved in a crash.  One of the main reasons for this is because there are too many drivers on the road who regularly act negligently with respect to bike riders and this can lead to serious personal injury. If the driver stays on the scene of the accident and does the responsible thing, even if they were negligent in causing the accident, this will allow for plaintiff to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company, if the at-fault driver flees, things can get more complex. Continue reading

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Electric assist bikes have become increasingly popular, as many riders use them for the intended purpose of helping novice riders and commuters push their way up hills or gain some speed on their way to work. Some even see them as a democratizing force on city streets. And of course, the more people on bikes in the city, the more visibility we gain and the safer all cyclists are.bike injury lawyer

However, there has been some recent controversy in Boston over the fact that some people are essentially using them as motorcycles in bicycle lanes or even on paths strictly designated for bicyclists and pedestrians.

“Electric assist bikes are still bikes, but they are capable of traveling 20-miles-per-hour,” said Boston bike attorney Andrew Fischer. “When they are in bike lanes, they become a big hazard because they are proceeding as a motorized vehicle in a lane where motorized vehicles are not allowed.” Continue reading

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Bike commuting and even recreational bike riding has increased in popularity so much in recent years that it is not uncommon for people to be out on the roads on the coldest and windiest days in Greater Boston. While some will look at these dedicated riders who are trying to get to work or training for their next triathlon as somewhat overly-ambitious, to these riders, it is worth hitting the streets anyway.  The problem is there are many Boston bike crashes that occur in the winter due to the negligence of people driving in the snow in a manner that is not safe given the current conditions.  This is negligent conduct and can be the basis for filing a Boston bike crash lawsuit.

Standard of Care in Winter Whether is Still That of a Reasonable and Prudent Person

Boston Bike Crash AttorneyWhenever anyone gets behind the wheel of a car in Boston or anywhere else in Massachusetts, they owe a duty of due care towards anyone who might be foreseeably injured by not driving with the requisite amount of care.  This is known as the reasonable and prudent person standard and can be found in the proposed jury instructions for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, which is designed to explain the negligence standard to jurors in civil cases throughout the state. Continue reading

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Cars are designed to protect the occupants from serious or fatal injuries. This does not mean that there are not Boston car accidents involving serious or deadly injuries, but many car accidents do not result in significant injuries to the occupants. A bicycle on the other hand has no real protection from the impact in the event of the crash.  Bike riders should wear helmets, even though adults are not legally required to do so in Massachusetts. But even with a helmet, there is still a real chance of the rider suffering severe personal injury in the event of a bike crash.  This lack of protection should not be held against the rider in the event of crash that his not the rider’s fault. The law thus offers no such protection to defendants in a Boston bike crash lawsuit.

Boston bike attorneyAccording to a recent news article from the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript, a 10-year-old boy from New England, who is a world-renowned golf prodigy, was seriously injured in what initially appeared to be a minor bike crash.  The boy was riding his bike when appeared to simply fall off.  When he fell, he landed on the handlebars with his stomach.  Despite hitting the handle bars, it appeared that this was not a serious accident and would only result in a bruise. Continue reading

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Many bike accidents in which a bicyclist is seriously injured or killed occur in areas in which there is not adequate bike safety infrastructure and drivers have not been given sufficient education on the topic of bike safety as more and more bike commuters are on the roads of Boston and other major cities across the nation than ever before.

bicycle accident lawyerThis is not to say the driver who causes an accident is not at-fault, and thus the proper defendant in a Boston bike crash lawsuit, but having better bike safety infrastructure should still be pursued since anything that reduces the number of bike riders injured each year should certainly be pursued. Continue reading

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The demand for more protected bike lanes in Boston has become insatiable. This was underscored – quite literally – across the Congress Street bridge, connecting the neighborhood of Fort Point to the Financial District. The Boston Globe reports an anonymous bicycle activist painted a shaky white line between the barrier-protected pedestrian walkway and the rush of traffic. Periodically inside those lines was a roughly-drawn bicycle, indicating the clear intent was to carve out a safe space for cyclists. bike safety lawyer

Reactions within the cycling community have been largely positive, with some commenting the “artist” behind the guerrilla-style streetscape was heroic and “brilliant.” Tweets from all over the world were shared, many noting this is a major bicycle route through the city – and one where bicycle safety needs to be a top priority.

City officials were quoted as saying that while they appreciate the sentiment, bicycle lanes must go through a full proper review of the engineering process. But there had been a review, as there had been a bicycle lane on the bridge before, that had worn off over time. Then City workers power-washed off the spray-painted line along the northbound lane.