Not too long ago, Chicago saw the implementation of a bike sharing program, allowing individuals to utilize community bikes to travel and recreate. Though this can be beneficial for many, the sad fact remains that motorists tend not to give bicyclists the right to share the road that all bicyclists deserve. When a bike travels on the road, its rider has the right of way. This means that vehicles sharing a lane with a bike should yield to the bicyclist before making a right turn.
Tragically, the first fatality involving the bike sharing program occurred a few months ago, and now the victim’s family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the trucker who caused the accident and the company for which he works. The victim, a 25-year-old woman, was utilizing a Divvy bike when she was struck and killed by a flooring supply company’s flat-bed truck. The woman was sharing a lane with the truck when the trucker turned without yielding to the bicyclist’s right of way. It is unclear if the woman was trying to go straight or turn, but either way she was unable to avoid the collision.
The loss of a loved one can be devastating, especially when the death was unexpected and wholly preventable. In addition to the emotional pain and suffering that can be felt by surviving family members, they might also incur undeserved expenses, including medical expenses, funeral costs and lost wages.
Compensation may be available to these families if they successfully seek out a wrongful death lawsuit, as the family in this case is doing. But suing a company and individual can present challenges, and the amount of information and legal issues that may arise can require significant time and knowledge. To ensure they are putting forth the best claim possible under the circumstances, many find the assistance of a legal professional beneficial.
Source: CBS Chicago, “Parents of Divvy Cyclist Killed In Crash File Wrongful Death Lawsuit,” Aug. 1, 2016