San Diego E-Bike Accident Attorney
E-bikes! We’ve all heard about them and perhaps a few of us own one or two. But what’s the law behind e-bikes and injuries? Is it any different than any other kind of personal injury law? Let’s find out, as e-bikes keep growing in popularity and with it a rise in accidents and injuries.
But first, if you or a loved one has been involved in an e-bike incident, we encourage you to reach out to Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers at (619) 550-1355 to arrange a complimentary case assessment. Now, on to our discussion.
Unique Laws Governing E-bikes in California
The laws regarding e-bikes in California are unique, which often creates a state of confusion and uncertainty for all parties involved in related accidents. As e-bike usage continues to grow in popularity, particularly in beach towns and coastal areas like San Diego, we must establish clear policies and laws governing e-bike accidents and determine when it is appropriate to consult with a San Diego e-bike accident attorney.
E-bike accidents can involve other cyclists, pedestrians, or drivers, with the most severe resulting in significant injuries or fatalities when motorists are involved.
It is crucial to draw a clear distinction between conventional vehicular accidents and those that involve e-bikes. That said, let us first examine the specific laws surrounding e-bikes in California.
Categories of E-bikes
Notably, in 2015, California enacted AB-1096, which outlines the categorization of e-bikes based on their mode of operation and maximum speed. E-bikes are grouped into three categories as follows:
E-bikes that require pedaling and have a maximum speed of 20 mph
E-bikes that do not require pedaling, with a maximum speed of 20 mph
E-bikes with a maximum speed of 28 mph.
It should be noted, however, that factory settings limiting speed can be purposely, and perhaps illegally, defeated by a rider or the person assembling the e-bike
Lenient Laws Concerning E-bikes
California possesses one of the most relaxed laws relating to e-bikes in the United States. Class 3 e-bikes are permitted to travel through public routes via bike lanes, with Class 1 and 2 e-bikes restricted to paths.
E-bike riders of Class 3 are not required to hold a special license; their age must be at least 16 and must wear a well-fitting helmet.
E-bikes are not classified as motor vehicles in California and are exempt from registration with the state, as well as liability insurance. This exclusion leads to difficulties in determining liability in e-bike accidents.
Examining e-bike accidents that have taken place within the San Diego region can be beneficial for gaining insight into the course of action to be taken following such an incident. This includes determining the appropriate time to seek legal counsel from an experienced e-bike accident lawyer.
For instance, in a recent collision in El Cajon, which is located within San Diego County, a 32-year-old e-bike rider lost their life after being struck by an SUV. The victim had not been wearing a helmet and was thrown from their e-bike upon impact with the vehicle, which was traveling at a speed of 45 mph. If a similar scenario were to occur, there may be various parties that could be held liable for damages, with the driver and their auto insurance company being the most obvious defendants to consider in an ensuing legal case.
If the e-bike malfunctions and plays a role in causing the accident, the manufacturer of the e-bike could potentially face legal action. However, it’s important to recognize that each accident is distinct, and seeking counsel from a personal injury attorney is the initial step toward initiating a lawsuit after an e-bike collision.
Causes of E-Bike Injuries
The incidence of e-bike accidents is on the rise, as reported by insurance companies, with injury claims representing the fastest-growing category in California. However, the reason behind this trend is not always clear. Several factors have been identified as contributing to the occurrence of e-bike accidents and injuries. These include:
- Loss of control, excessive speed, and uneven terrain, leading to falls from the bike.
- Collisions with pedestrians or other bikes/scooters on designated paths and sidewalks.
- Crash with other vehicles on roadways.
- Malfunctioning bicycle battery explosion.
The faster speeds of e-bikes can increase the likelihood of accidents, as well as the severity of resulting personal injuries.
It’s essential to note that any accident can result from negligence on the part of the rider or the careless actions of those around them.
Common Injuries from E-Bike Incidents
E-bike injuries resemble severe motorcycle injuries more than those suffered from ordinary bicycling. The following injuries are most frequently observed at Mission Hospital due to e-bike accidents:
- Fractured arms and legs
- Head injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Damage to internal organs such as lacerations on the liver
- Stunting of growth plates in children
- Wrongful death
Regardless of the cause of your injuries, engaging a skilled California e-bike accident attorney is imperative to secure the appropriate compensation for your losses.
Why You Need a Lawyer for an E-Bike Claim
It is important to seek the assistance of experienced e-bike accident lawyers to ensure the optimal outcome of your injury claim.
The process of winning e-bike accident cases can present complexities that require specialized legal expertise. The initial step involves determining liability, which entails identifying the party responsible for the accident and who should be held accountable in a lawsuit. The culpable party may include various entities, such as:
- Vehicle drivers who collide with e-bike riders.
- Cyclists who crash into pedestrians or other bicycle riders.
- E-bike manufacturers for product defects.
- A city authority due to poor road conditions.
- An e-bike seller who poorly assembled the bike or disengaged certain features such as a speed limiter
A proficient attorney will thoroughly assess every facet of your claim and build a robust that conclusively establishes liability.
How Much is Your E-Bike Accident Case Worth?
Determining the value of your e-bike accident case in California can be a complex process. However, pursuing a personal injury lawsuit is a crucial step toward obtaining full compensation.
The actual amount of compensation you may receive will depend on various factors.
Typically, the severity of the accident’s impact on your life will play a significant role in determining the worth of your case. Factors that can influence the compensation you may receive include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Rehabilitation costs
- Other ongoing or lifelong effects on your quality of life.
E-bike accidents can often result in more severe injuries that require longer recuperation periods, including additional surgeries, rehabilitation, wound care, and infection prevention. Seeking legal representation can help you navigate the complexities of your case and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
What should you do if you were injured in an e-bike crash?
Prioritizing your health is of utmost importance. It is crucial to consult a medical professional immediately for treatment. After ensuring your safety, take necessary measures like preserving evidence and filing an accident report. To navigate through these steps seamlessly, it is advisable to get in touch with Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers, as our team can lend you expert guidance.
Call a San Diego E-bike Accident Lawyer
If you’ve been the victim of an e-bike accident and suffered physical or financial harm, we invite you to schedule a complimentary consultation with our team of lawyers at Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at (619) 550-1355 to arrange your appointment.
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