Senior Citizen In Bike Lane Hit By Truck

Our client, a lady in her seventies, was riding her bicycle in the bike lane when a man driving a large pick-up truck turned right from a cross street and struck her from behind, knocking her to the pavement.

  • She was rushed by ambulance to the emergency room where she was diagnosed with four rib fractures on the right and pneumohemothorax (collapsed lung). She was given an epidural for pain.
  • A CT scan revealed a massive right rotator cuff tear. X-rays revealed a right elbow enthesopathy (detached tendon).
  • She remained hospitalized for six days before being transferred to a rehabilitation center. She underwent occupational and physical therapy. She remained there for six additional days. She was given instructions for home self-care and was advised to keep her right arm in a sling.
  • She continued follow-up care with orthopedic surgeon. She underwent epidural injections in her shoulder. An MRI on March 18 revealed the large rotator cuff tear with associated muscular atrophy, tendinosis of the subscapularis and arthropathy.
  • She endured several grueling months of physical therapy and rehabiltation. Developing adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder) is common in this type of injury and she will have to continue a dedicated self-help home care program of exercise and stretching.
  • Due to her age it was decided that rotator cuff repair surgery was not a viable option despite her limited range of motion. However, her orthopedist indicates that a total shoulder replacement is a very real possibily.
  • Prior to the accident she had a very active lifestyle. She played golf with friends twice a week and biked with friends several times a week. In the winter she participated in bowling. All of these activities have been curtailed during the rehabiitation from her injuries.
  • She has developed symptoms of PTSD, anxiety and depression and will need to continue to address these issues with additional talk therapy.
  • She also needed dental work for a cracked tooth and crown.

The law firm of MartinLaw PLLC was successful in completing a mid six figure settlement for this lady within six months of the accident.

To find out how MartinLaw, PLLC and attorney Chuck Martin will handle your car or bicycle accident case please visit the bicycle or car accident page.


What to do When you Get into a Bicycle Accident

Cyclists can save a lot on their monthly and annual costs by biking to work instead of driving, and it also improves their health and fitness! Seattle and the Greater Seattle areas are popular for cyclists of all levels of skill. Approximately 20 percent of Washington State residents rode a bicycle in 2001, and it is the fastest growing mode of transportation in our region, according to the Cascade Bicycle Club.

The Seattle Department of Transportation reports that more than 158,000 Seattleites ride bikes – either for general recreation or to get to a destination (such as work). Seattle is ranked number two in the nation for urban walking and bicycling, as the Seattle Times reported this spring. However, hundreds of bicycle collisions still happen each year – more than 1,800 accidents involving a cyclist were reported between 2007-2011. Click here for more bicycling safety statistics.

Cyclists of all skill levels need to be alert, follow traffic and safety laws, and know their rights to avoid and protect themselves from car accidents and the repercussions.

Here are the important steps to follow when you get into a bicycle accident – particularly if it’s an accident involving another motor vehicle:

  1. Call the police. If you are able, call the police immediately after the bike accident and wait for them to arrive. If the police are involved, you can be sure that correct contact information will be exchanged. Additionally, the police will write an accident report so that there is documentation of the incident – you may need this later, to press insurance claims. Make sure to report all personal injuries even if they seem to be minor – after an accident, adrenaline in your body may trick you into thinking you are uninjured, so be aware. If there were any witnesses to the accident, it is helpful to also have them report what they saw or heard.
  2. Exchange information. Of course, you should get the contact information for everyone involved in the accident – the driver of the car(s), and any witnesses. For any vehicles involved, obtain the driver’s name, insurance information, phone number, home address, and driver’s license number. You should also get the contact information for any witnesses to the bicycle accident.
  3. Contact a Personal Injury Attorney. Before you contact the insurance companies, you should find and choose a personal injury attorney to help you with your case. These kinds of lawyers are skilled in this kind of situation, to ensure you receive the fullest extent of just compensation for damages to yourself, your bike, and future costs associated with the accident. If you talk to an insurance company before speaking to a lawyer, you may not receive the full recompense you are eligible for under the law.

Click here for some more tips on handling bicycle accidents with cars, according to a blog at Should you get into a bicycle accident with a car, contact Martin Law, PLLC for excellent, skillful support and guidance through the after-accident process.

Featured photo credit Flickr user Fort Greene Focus.