While riding through city streets in and around Los Angeles, there are any number of safety issues that a bicyclist must be concerned with. Of course, most of those involve vehicles on the roadway, but there can also be safety issues involving the roadway itself. Defects in the roadway can cause severe injuries to a cyclist. If you were injured in a bicycle accident that was caused by a defect in a roadway, you’ll want to speak with one of our Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyers right away.
Common Defective Road Conditions in and Around Los Angeles
A road hazard can be any condition that creates a risk of harm to you as a bicyclist. Here are a few examples of them:
- Potholes and sinkholes that are deep enough and long enough to cause a bicyclist to crash if he or she hits one.
- Roadside drainage or utility ditches.
- Construction sites without warning signs.
- Construction sites that are improperly maintained.
- Uneven road surfaces.
- Improperly functioning traffic lights.
The Notice Requirement
A personal injury claim against a governmental entity based on dangerous road conditions is different than a claim against another driver. Before a bicyclist who was injured by a dangerous road condition can bring a personal injury lawsuit in court, California law requires him or her to provide notice of a personal injury claim to the governmental entity that controls the roadway where the accident occurred. That notice must be served within 180 days of the date of the accident. The governmental entity then has 45 days to respond, if it responds at all. Failure to properly file a statutorily compliant notice on the governmental entity’s designated agent will be cause for dismissal of a personal injury lawsuit against the entity. The notice requirement doesn’t shorten the two-year statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit against the entity, but it is a prerequisite.
Bringing the Lawsuit
In a personal injury lawsuit against a California governmental entity in a road defect case, certain facts must be proved to succeed. Those follow:
- The entity that you sued is responsible for that part of the roadway where your accident occurred.
- There was a dangerous condition on the roadway at the time of your accident.
- That dangerous condition caused your accident.
- The governmental entity that you sued knew or should have known of the dangerous condition.
- The entity failed to warn of or repair the dangerous condition within a reasonable amount of time.
Certain types of road conditions that wouldn’t ordinarily affect motor vehicles can cause accidents that result in severe injuries to bicyclists. When the carelessness and negligence of a governmental entity causes injuries, victims should be compensated for their damages. Our Los Angeles bicycle accident attorneys have seen dangerous road conditions cause severe and permanent injuries to bicyclists in the past.
Contact a Bicycle Injury Lawyer
Los Angeles Bicycle Law represents bicyclists because we are bicyclists. We know first-hand how rewarding, yet dangerous, cycling can be in the Los Angeles area. Even though the law treats bicyclists with the responsibilities and rights of a motor vehicle, the road itself offers far fewer protections. That is why we actively fight to protect bicyclists in our community. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident in Los Angeles, contact Los Angeles Bicycle Law today.