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Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog



Published by Baltimore, Maryland Motorcyle Accident Attorneys — Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC



Updated: 2018-02-20T17:45:00Z

 



One Killed, Another Injured in Auto Accident During Bike Race

2018-02-20T07:46:42Z

Maryland bicycle accidents are a major concern across the state. Indeed, cities like Baltimore and Washington, D.C. are constantly taking steps to make their roads more bike-friendly in hopes of reducing the number of serious and fatal Maryland bicycle accidents. There are many causes of bicycle accidents, but most commonly these accidents are caused by […]Maryland bicycle accidents are a major concern across the state. Indeed, cities like Baltimore and Washington, D.C. are constantly taking steps to make their roads more bike-friendly in hopes of reducing the number of serious and fatal Maryland bicycle accidents. There are many causes of bicycle accidents, but most commonly these accidents are caused by distracted drivers. Earlier this month, one man was killed and another woman seriously injured after they were struck by a pick-up truck while participating in a bike race. According to a local news report covering the tragic accident, the driver of the pick-up truck evidently lost control of the vehicle and ended up crossing into oncoming traffic and driving on the gravel median on the opposite side of the road. As the driver realized he was outside his lane, he attempted to get back into his lane, overcorrected, and ended up striking two bicyclists. The bicyclists were participating in a race at the time and were among many other bicyclists on the road at the time. Witnesses told police that the pick-up truck was traveling at speeds around 100 miles per hour in the moments leading up to the accident. Police arrested the driver on charges of vehicular homicide, noting that he should have slowed down upon seeing the bicyclists on the roadway. The driver has since posted bail, and the result of the charges against him is still pending. Establishing Liability in Maryland Bicycle Accidents When someone is injured or killed in a Maryland bicycle accident, the driver responsible for the accident may be held liable through a Maryland personal injury or wrongful death case. In order to be successful in either of these lawsuits, the person bringing the case must establish that the defendant driver’s negligence was the cause of the accident victim’s injury. Typically, this requires that the plaintiff prove each of the four elements of a negligence claim:  duty, breach, causation, and damages. The elements of duty and damages are usually met without much difficulty. However, establishing that a driver’s conduct breached a duty of care owed to the accident victim, and then establishing that the defendant’s breach of that duty was the legal cause of the injury or death, can be more difficult. Anyone considering bringing a Maryland bicycle accident lawsuit should consult with a dedicated Maryland personal injury attorney prior to doing so. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bicycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated team of Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience representing victims and their families in a wide range of Maryland personal injury cases, including bicycle accident claims. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case, call 410-654-3600 today. More Blog Posts: Court Discusses Recreational Use Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 18, 2018. Parental Responsibility for Maryland Motorcycle Accidents, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published February 6, 2018. [...]



Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Caused by Improper Left-Hand Turns

2018-02-13T04:43:30Z

Motorcyclists have the very same rights to use the roads as other motorists, and this means that other motorists must yield the right-of-way to motorcyclists when necessary. However, each year, there are thousands of motorcycle accidents involving a motorist’s failure to yield to a motorcyclist. Of all Maryland motorcycle accidents, the most common are when […]Motorcyclists have the very same rights to use the roads as other motorists, and this means that other motorists must yield the right-of-way to motorcyclists when necessary. However, each year, there are thousands of motorcycle accidents involving a motorist’s failure to yield to a motorcyclist. Of all Maryland motorcycle accidents, the most common are when a motorcyclist is traveling straight and another vehicle attempts to make a left-hand turn in front of the motorcyclist. Indeed, National Highway Transportation Safety Administration data suggests that approximately 40% of all motorcycle accidents involving a motorcycle and another vehicle are caused by the driver making a left-hand turn in front of the motorcyclist. Left-turn motorcycle accidents are common for a number of reasons. First, motorists may not be accustomed to sharing the road with motorcycles, which have a slimmer profile than cars. This often results in a motorist’s inability to accurately gauge how fast a motorcycle is traveling at the moment the motorist decides to initiate a left-hand turn. Another common reason for left-turn motorcycle accidents is the motorist’s failure to see an approaching motorcycle. This is often due to distracted driving on the motorist’s part. Young Man Killed in Left-Hand Turn Motorcycle Accident Earlier this month, a 24-year-old man was killed when the motorcycle he was operating was struck by another vehicle. According to a local news report, the motorcyclist was traveling straight when the other motorist attempted to make a left-hand turn into an apartment complex as the two vehicles approached. Sadly, the 18-year-old motorist miscalculated the amount of time she had to complete the turn and turned right into the path of the motorcyclist. The motorcyclist was left with no time to avoid the other vehicle and crashed squarely into the side of the vehicle. The motorcyclist was thrown from the bike and was taken to the hospital as soon as emergency responders arrived on the scene. He was later pronounced dead from the injuries he sustained in the accident. Two others involved in the accident were also taken to the hospital and are expected to make a full recovery. There was no indication that speed was a factor in the accident, but authorities told reporters that a full investigation will be conducted. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Motorcycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated team of Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC has extensive experience assisting victims and their families with seeking the compensation they deserve. We offer victims free consultations to discuss their case with no expectations or obligations. To schedule your free consultation with a Maryland injury attorney at Lebowitz & Mzhen, call 410-654-3600 today. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you get the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Court Discusses Recreational Use Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 18, 2018. Parental Responsibility for Maryland Motorcycle Accidents, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published February 6, 2018. [...]



Parental Responsibility for Maryland Motorcycle Accidents

2018-02-05T07:16:45Z

When a parent allows a child to use their car, they are trusting that the child will operate the vehicle responsibly. However, history has proven that this is not always the case. In fact, due to the inherent risks of sharing the road with motorcycles, many Maryland motorcycle accidents are caused by young and inexperienced […]When a parent allows a child to use their car, they are trusting that the child will operate the vehicle responsibly. However, history has proven that this is not always the case. In fact, due to the inherent risks of sharing the road with motorcycles, many Maryland motorcycle accidents are caused by young and inexperienced drivers. Most people assume that when a child causes a motorcycle accident, the child’s parents can be held civilly liable for any damage and injuries caused by the accident, which are often quite serious. In a recent case, a state appellate court discussed when a parent may be liable for their child’s accident. That court applied the “family purpose doctrine,” which confers liability onto the owner of the vehicle that the related minor was operating when causing the accident. This is a blanket rule that applies by default, making it easier for accident victims to recover compensation for their injuries from a minor’s parents. However, under Maryland personal injury law, a different standard is applied. Maryland employs a different doctrine, entitled negligent entrustment, when determining if a parent can be held liable for the negligent acts of their children. The question in a negligent entrustment analysis is 1.) whether the teen driver was incompetent to operate a motor vehicle, and 2.) whether the parent knew about the incompetence. The idea is that Maryland lawmakers have determined that a parent should not be liable for a child’s negligence unless the minor’s inability to safely operate a vehicle was known to the parent at the time they allowed the child to use the vehicle. Establishing that a negligent minor’s parents are liable for an accident is difficult in Maryland, but it can be done. For example, if a parent allows a child to use the family car despite knowledge of the minor’s lack of experience, a court may find that the parent can be held liable for the resulting injuries. Also, if a minor is engaged in criminal wrongdoing, the minor’s parents can be held liable for any injuries or property damage that result. Another example in which liability may be appropriate is if a parent is hosting a party and provides alcoholic beverages to their children, who then use the car with permission and cause an accident. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Motorcycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated team of Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC has extensive experience representing victims and their families in cases against those responsible for their injuries. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your case with an attorney today, call 410-654-3600. Calling is risk-free because you are not obligated to pursue your case unless it is your desire to do so, and we will not bill you for our services unless we can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Court Discusses Recreational Use Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 18, 2018. Bicycle Accidents on Maryland Roads, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 5, 2018. [...]



The Dangers Railroad Crossings Present to Maryland Motorcyclists and Bicyclists

2018-01-24T20:44:41Z

Probably anyone who knows how to ride a motorcycle remembers navigating their first set of railroad tracks. To be sure, even railroad tracks that are no longer used pose a potential threat to motorcyclists, who can lose traction and skid out over the smooth surface of the tracks unless they are crossed in a perpendicular […]Probably anyone who knows how to ride a motorcycle remembers navigating their first set of railroad tracks. To be sure, even railroad tracks that are no longer used pose a potential threat to motorcyclists, who can lose traction and skid out over the smooth surface of the tracks unless they are crossed in a perpendicular direction. However, active railroad tracks present a much more serious danger to all motorists, including Maryland motorcyclists. While not necessarily one of the top causes of Maryland bicycle accidents, several bicyclists and motorcyclists are involved in accidents on or near railroad crossings each year. While most of these accidents do not involve speeding trains, the danger is still present, and motorcyclists should take precautions whenever crossing railroad tracks. This is especially because a motorcyclist may not be able to hear a train’s horn over the sound of the bike’s engine. Of course, not all the burden of avoiding an accident rests with the motorcyclist. The railroad company is responsible for the maintenance of a track, and local government agencies are tasked with ensuring that railroad crossings are safely designed to reduce the risk of an accident. When a motorcycle accident occurs on or near a railroad track, anyone injured as a result of the accident should reach out to a dedicated Maryland motorcycle accident attorney to discuss their case. Bicyclist Killed at Florida Railroad Crossing Earlier this month, one man was killed as he was struck by a passing train as he pedaled his bike across an active railroad track. According to a local news report, the accident was the second involving the high-speed rail line in the span of just one week. Evidently, the railroad-crossing gates had descended, and the red flashing lights were illuminated, but the bicyclist was able to pedal around the gates. As the bicyclist crossed the tracks, the train struck him, killing him instantly. In the wake of the accident, some lawmakers have called for an investigation into the deaths to see what could be done to prevent future accidents, while other lawmakers have introduced bills that would further regulate the railroad industry, as well as the safety features that are installed at major intersections. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bicycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in any kind of Maryland motorcycle or bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. Even if you believe that your injuries were caused by “accident,” there may be potentially liable parties. The dedicated Maryland personal injury lawyers at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience assisting victims and their clients with evaluating their cases and pursuing compensation aggressively when appropriate. To learn more, and to schedule your free consultation with an experienced Maryland personal injury attorney today, call 410-654-3600. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you recover the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Court Discusses Recreational Use Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 18, 2018. Bicycle Accidents on Maryland Roads, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 5, 2018. [...]



Court Discusses Recreational Use Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case

2018-01-18T22:21:48Z

Earlier this month, an appellate court issued a written opinion in a personal injury case that presents a very important issue for the victims of Maryland bicycle accidents. The case required the court to interpret and apply the state’s recreational use statute, determining if the conduct of the government defendant in charge of maintaining the […]Earlier this month, an appellate court issued a written opinion in a personal injury case that presents a very important issue for the victims of Maryland bicycle accidents. The case required the court to interpret and apply the state’s recreational use statute, determining if the conduct of the government defendant in charge of maintaining the land where the plaintiff sustained his injuries rose to the level of “willful or wanton.” Finding that the government’s conduct was not willful or wanton, the court determined that the government agency was entitled to immunity and dismissed the plaintiff’s case. The Facts of the Case The plaintiff was riding his bicycle on a mixed-use trail on a summer morning. As the plaintiff approached a pedestrian on the trail, he rang his bell and began to pass the pedestrian by moving into the middle of the trail. However, as the plaintiff steered the bike to the middle of the trail, the bike’s tire got caught in a crack that was about three inches wide and two inches deep, and ran approximately four feet in the direction of travel. As the bike’s wheel got caught, the plaintiff lost his balance and fell, injuring his shoulder. As it turns out, the government was aware of the crack and had begun to take actions to fix it. However, due to the various levels of approval such repairs were required to obtain, the repairs were not conducted until three days after the plaintiff’s fall. The plaintiff filed a personal injury case against the local park district, arguing that the district was negligent in failing to properly maintain the trail. In response, the government argued that it was entitled to immunity from the plaintiff’s lawsuit under the state’s recreational use statute. The court agreed with the government, initially noting that it was undisputed that the trail where the injury occurred was created for recreational purposes. Thus, the government is immune from liability unless its conduct could be considered willful or wanton. Here, the court noted that the government had taken some actions to remedy the hazardous crack, but the repairs had not yet occurred. This, the court held, was evidence that the government did not willfully create the crack or fail to repair it. The court also rejected the plaintiff’s argument that the government could have done more, noting that the question was not whether the government was merely negligent but whether its conduct was willful or wanton. Maryland’s Recreational Use Statute As noted above, this case is important for Maryland bicycle accident victims because Maryland’s recreational use statute is similar to the one applied by the court in this case. In Maryland, a landowner is immune from injuries occurring on land that is opened up to the public for recreational use in some limited situations. However, as in the case discussed above, if the landowner’s conduct is willful or malicious, such immunity does not apply. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bicycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated Maryland personal injury lawyers at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience handling Maryland bicycle accident cases and are intimately familiar with the state’s recreational use statute. While issues of immunity may arise in some limited circumstances, it is best to discuss your case with a dedicated attorney prior to making any decisions. Call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation with a dedicated Maryland personal injury[...]



Establishing Fault in a Maryland Motorcycle Accident

2018-01-10T23:52:02Z

While many Maryland motorcycle accidents are clearly the fault of one party or another, other accidents present more a complex situation. For example, if both of the drivers involved committed a traffic violation, it may be difficult to determine which party should be held responsible. Similarly, if there are no witnesses to an accident other […]While many Maryland motorcycle accidents are clearly the fault of one party or another, other accidents present more a complex situation. For example, if both of the drivers involved committed a traffic violation, it may be difficult to determine which party should be held responsible. Similarly, if there are no witnesses to an accident other than the operators of the vehicles, this may create a “he said, she said” situation requiring additional investigation. When it comes to establishing who was at fault for a motorcycle accident, the initial job rests with the police. However, in some cases, a police investigation comes up short, failing to name either party. Or in cases of a hit-and-run accident, the at-fault driver may not be located. In either event, an accident victim can always seek compensation through their own insurance policy. However, in some cases, an insurance company will deny a motorist’s claim, leaving them with no means of financial recovery. If an insurance company denies a motorist’s claim or offers insufficient compensation to cover a victim’s injuries, the accident victim can file a personal injury claim. However, Maryland applies a strict legal doctrine when it comes to determining which parties are entitled to compensation. Under Maryland’s contributory negligence rule, only motorists who are completely free from fault are able to recover damages for injuries they sustained in an accident. Thus, it is very important that motorcycle accident victims reach out to discuss their case with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Teen Dies in Motorcycle Accident Earlier this month, an 18-year-old died in a motorcycle accident when he was unable to avoid a car that had pulled out of a parking lot. According to a local news report covering the tragic accident, the motorcyclist was traveling at a high rate of speed when the motorist pulled out in front of him. The motorcyclist attempted to avoid the car, but he was unable to maintain control of the bike and ended up colliding with the car. The teen was thrown from the bike and was later pronounced dead at the hospital. The accident remains under investigation, and police have not made any arrests or issued any citations as of this time. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Motorcycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. However, due to the strict laws in Maryland, it is important that you are able to establish that you were not at all at fault for causing the collision. The dedicated Maryland motorcycle accident attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have decades of combined experience handling motorcycle accident cases, and they know what it takes to ensure their clients obtain the compensation they deserve. Call 410-650-3600 to schedule a free consultation with a Maryland motorcycle accident attorney today. More Blog Posts: Commuter Bicycle Accidents in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published December 20, 2017. Bicycle Accidents on Maryland Roads, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 5, 2018. [...]



Bicycle Accidents on Maryland Roads

2018-01-05T20:49:51Z

Maryland bicycle accidents are occurring at a startling rate across the state. The majority of these accidents take place in larger urban areas, such as Baltimore or Washington, D.C., and most occur at intersections. Intersections present a particularly dangerous situation to bicyclists because many drivers are unfamiliar with the traffic laws as they pertain to […]Maryland bicycle accidents are occurring at a startling rate across the state. The majority of these accidents take place in larger urban areas, such as Baltimore or Washington, D.C., and most occur at intersections. Intersections present a particularly dangerous situation to bicyclists because many drivers are unfamiliar with the traffic laws as they pertain to bicyclists, and they assume that the bicyclist is going to yield to them. However, that is not what the law requires. As a general rule, motorists must treat bicyclists as though they are any other vehicle on the road, with some exceptions. For example, motorists must take care in passing bicyclists and should leave ample room when pulling back in front of a bicyclist after passing. Additionally, motorists must leave at least three feet between their vehicle and the bicyclist. A driver’s failure to safely follow the traffic laws may result in their financial liability to anyone injured in an accident. Settlement Reached in Bicycle Accident Case Involving Garbage Truck Earlier last month, a settlement agreement was reached in a case involving a man who was struck by a garbage truck while riding his bicycle on the shoulder of the road. According to a local news report covering the accident and subsequent personal injury case, the parties agreed to settle the lawsuit for $2.6 million. According to the article, the bicyclist was traveling on the right shoulder of the road when he was passed by a garbage truck. The garbage truck then began to initiate a right-hand turn in front of the bicyclist, cutting him off. The bicyclist attempted to brake to avoid the collision, but he fell off his bike and landed underneath the truck. The truck then ran the bicyclist over, resulting in serious injuries. The bicyclist suffered serious scarring to his face and fractured several bones in his face and around his left shoulder. Due to a complication during a subsequent surgery, the bicyclist was left without eyesight in his left eye. The bicyclist filed a personal injury lawsuit against the driver of the truck, as well as the city that employed him. Initially, the defendant claimed that the bicyclist was at fault in causing the collision and for allowing his injuries to be more severe by not wearing a helmet. However, the case was not taken to trial. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bicycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience handling a wide range of Maryland bicycle and motorcycle accident cases, and we know what it takes to be successful on our clients’ behalf. Call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney to discuss your case today. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Commuter Bicycle Accidents in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published December 20, 2017. Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Caused by Inattentive Drivers, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published December 6, 2017. [...]



Court Upholds Defense Jury Verdict in Recent Motorcycle Accident Case Against Government Agency

2018-01-03T19:12:51Z

Earlier this month, an appellate court in Kentucky issued a written opinion in a motorcycle accident case that illustrates a very important principle that also applies to many Maryland motorcycle accident cases. The case required the appellate court to determine if sufficient evidence existed to support the jury’s verdict in favor of the defendant. Finding […]Earlier this month, an appellate court in Kentucky issued a written opinion in a motorcycle accident case that illustrates a very important principle that also applies to many Maryland motorcycle accident cases. The case required the appellate court to determine if sufficient evidence existed to support the jury’s verdict in favor of the defendant. Finding that sufficient evidence did exist, the court affirmed the jury’s verdict. The Facts of the Case A few days after a major wind storm, the plaintiff was injured when he struck a fallen tree in the middle of the roadway. The plaintiff filed a personal injury lawsuit against the county engineer, as well as the engineer’s supervisor, arguing that they were negligent in failing to follow their duty to maintain a clear roadway. Initially, the engineer argued that he was entitled to government immunity because he did not believe tree removal to be a part of his job. However, that issue was appealed, and it was determined that the engineer was not entitled to government immunity merely because he was unaware of his full duties. After that decision, the case was sent back to the trial court to proceed toward trial. At trial, the engineer again testified that he was unaware of his duty to remove fallen trees from the roadway, and he explained that he did not even have the proper equipment to do so. In addition, the head of another government department testified that it was his duty to remove trees, rather than the engineer’s. The jury ultimately returned a verdict in favor of the engineer. The plaintiff appealed to the intermediate court, which reversed the jury’s verdict and granted the plaintiff a new trial. That court determined that the jury’s verdict was against the weight of the evidence. The engineer then appealed to the state’s high court. On the most recent appeal, the case was again reversed, this time in favor of the engineer. The court explained that the local rule clarifying that the county engineer was responsible for tree removal was not dispositive of the existence of a duty. Instead, the existence of a duty should be inferred from legislative intent – here, by looking at the structure and responsibilities of the government organizations. The court noted that another organization head explained that it was his duty to remove fallen trees from the roadway, which corroborated the engineer’s testimony. This, the court held, amounted to delegation of a ministerial duty. Thus, the question then became whether the engineer (or his superiors) were negligent in the selection of the delegate. The court then noted that the jury was presented with the necessary facts to make a conclusion, and that being the case, the jury’s decision should stand. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Motorcycle Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The Maryland motorcycle accident attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience representing injured motorcyclists in a wide range of personal injury claims, including those against government entities for failing to maintain a safe roadway. To learn more, and to speak with an attorney about your case, call 410-654-3600 today. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you recover the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Commuter Bicycle Accidents in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., Maryland Moto[...]



Commuter Bicycle Accidents in Baltimore and Washington, D.C.

2018-01-03T19:12:51Z

Given the increase in gas prices as well as the increase in environmental awareness, more and more people are eschewing gas-guzzling cars and hopping on their bikes to get to work. Riding a bike to work comes with a number of benefits, including saving money, getting exercise, and developing a closer connection with the community. […]Given the increase in gas prices as well as the increase in environmental awareness, more and more people are eschewing gas-guzzling cars and hopping on their bikes to get to work. Riding a bike to work comes with a number of benefits, including saving money, getting exercise, and developing a closer connection with the community. However, biking also comes with its share of hazards, especially when biking in urban areas. Each year, there are over 800 Maryland bicycle accidents across the state, with over 650 of those accidents resulting in the bicyclist being injured. Unfortunately, the data also suggest that the number of bicycle accidents in Maryland seems to be increasing. While the most recent data suggests that bicycle fatalities are fairly low, this number is likely to increase as more people choose bicycles as a preferred method of commuting. Over 85% of those accidents occur in the metropolitan areas of Baltimore and Washington, D.C. On top of the generally applicable traffic laws that apply in all situations, Maryland lawmakers have enacted several rules to protect bicyclists, including the following requirements: Motorists must leave at least three feet of space when passing a bicyclist; When a motorist passes a bicyclist, the motorist cannot get back into the lane until the bicyclist can be seen in the rear-view mirror; and Motorists must yield to bicyclists when making a turn. Commuter Killed in City Bike Accident Earlier this month, one woman was killed when she was struck by a garbage truck while riding her bike to work. According to a local news report covering the tragic accident, the woman was riding in a bike lane when a privately owned garbage truck made a turn in front of her. The woman was unable to avoid the collision and ran into the side of the truck, which then ran her over. Police are still investigating the fatal bicycle accident and have not issued charges against the driver of the truck. The accident has renewed discussions about the safety and prevalence of bike lanes in major urban areas. Indeed, Baltimore has recently made efforts to create protected bike lanes along several major thoroughfares, allowing bicyclists to more easily and safely commute from one end of the city to the other. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bike Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. The dedicated team of Maryland personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC have extensive experience representing victims in all kinds of bike accident cases. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with a dedicated Maryland bike accident attorney, call 410-654-3600 today. Calling is free, and we will not bill you for our services unless we are able to help you obtain the compensation you deserve. More Blog Posts: Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Involving Semi-Trucks, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published November 27, 2017. Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Caused by Inattentive Drivers, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published December 6, 2017. [...]



Court Narrowly Interprets Immunity Statute in Recent Bicycle Injury Case

2018-01-03T19:12:52Z

Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a personal injury lawsuit that presented an interesting issue that many Maryland bicycle accident plaintiffs encounter when seeking compensation for their injuries. The case involved the interpretation of a recreational use statute and required the court to determine whether the trail where the plaintiff […]Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a personal injury lawsuit that presented an interesting issue that many Maryland bicycle accident plaintiffs encounter when seeking compensation for their injuries. The case involved the interpretation of a recreational use statute and required the court to determine whether the trail where the plaintiff was injured was covered under the statute’s grant of immunity. Ultimately, the court concluded that the trail where the plaintiff’s injury occurred was not the type the legislature intended to include within the statute’s text. As a result, the plaintiff’s case was permitted to proceed toward trial or settlement negotiations. The Facts of the Case The plaintiff was injured while riding with a group of friends on a paved biking trail. Evidently, there was an area of the trail where the pavement had started to break away, due to vegetation that grew up through the pavement. The trail was paved and was painted with a yellow line to designate directional travel. The path was also used by an electric company to access power lines that ran to nearby neighborhoods. The path intersected not just with other mixed-use paths but also with several roads. As the plaintiff was riding behind a friend, her friend fell off her bike, causing the plaintiff to fall as well. The plaintiff was seriously injured as a result of the fall and filed a premises liability lawsuit against the city that was in charge of maintaining the path. The city claimed that it was entitled to immunity, based on the state’s recreational use statute that prevented an accident victim from holding a government party liable for injuries occurring on “any hiking, riding, fishing or hunting trail.” The trial court agreed with the city that the plaintiff’s injury occurred on a trail, and it granted the city’s motion for summary judgment. On initial appeal, the intermediate appellate court reversed the lower court’s ruling, finding that the path where the plaintiff fell was not considered a “trail” under the statute. The city appealed to the state’s high court. On appeal to the state’s high court, the intermediate appellate court’s decision was affirmed, albeit for different reasons. The court reasoned that the path was a “trail” as defined by the statute, but it was not the type of trail that the legislature intended to cover with the statute’s language. The court explained that the statute specifically mentioned “hiking, riding, fishing, or hunting” trails, which the court noted to all be “rustic, primitive, or unimproved.” Here, the path at issue was not rustic or unimproved but was paved and painted. Thus, the court concluded that the city was not entitled to immunity, and the plaintiff’s case should proceed. Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Accident? If you or a loved one has recently been injured in a Maryland bicycle accident, you may be entitled to monetary compensation. While Maryland does have a recreational use statute that will apply in some limited circumstances, many claims will not trigger a defendant’s immunity. To learn more about Maryland premises liability law, and to speak with a dedicated Maryland personal injury attorney about your case, call 410-654-3600 to schedule a free consultation with an attorney today. More Blog Posts: Maryland Motorcycle Accidents Involving Semi-Trucks, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Bl[...]