Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM Bicycle Accident Lawyer

Albuquerque and Santa Fe are popular bicycling destinations with a history of serious bike accidents

Given the dry weather year-round, bicycling is a popular outdoor sport in New Mexico and the Albuquerque and Santa Fe regions. 

Despite safety improvements, bicycle accidents are common in Albuquerque and Santa Fe

According to Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, in 2012, 726 lost their lives in bicycle/motor vehicle crashes nationally, just under two people every day of the year in the U.S. And according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2012 1.9% of traffic fatalities in New Mexico involved a bicyclist. While that number appears small, given the vastly higher number of motor vehicles on the roads, the death rate from bicycle crashes is high.

Bicycling Laws in New Mexico

New Mexico traffic-safety laws now include increased penalties for drivers that cause harm to bicyclists and a law requiring motorists to safely move from the right-hand lane or pass a bicyclist with at least three feet of space for safety. According to the State of New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division:

Every person riding a bicycle upon a roadway shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle.

Every person operating a bicycle upon a roadway shall ride as near to the right side of the roadway as practicable, exercising due care when passing a standing vehicle or one proceeding in the same direction.

Persons riding bicycles upon a roadway shall not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.

Every bicycle when in use at nighttime shall be equipped with a lamp on the front which shall emit a white light visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the front and with a red reflector on the rear of a type approved by the division which shall be visible from all distances from fifty feet to three hundred feet to the rear when directly in front of lawful upper beams of head lamps on a motor vehicle. 

Get information on bicycle crashes from the region's police departments

The Albuquerque Police Department offers information on accidents. You can get information about access to traffic collision reports at this link

The Santa Fe Police Department is also a good source of information after a bike collision. 

Albuquerque and Santa Fe bicycle crashes have common causes and deadly outcomes

While helmets and proper reflective gear make bicycling safer, riding a bicycle is riskier than driving a car. Maintaining control is more difficult on two wheels, and when collisions happen, bicyclists are at greater risk of serious injury or death because they don't have an enclosed vehicle for protection.

Common causes of bicycle crashes include:

  • Motorist turning across path of cyclist;
  • Cyclist riding into the path of a motor vehicle;
  • Cyclist turning right from a major road and from a minor road;
  • Child cyclist playing or riding too fast.

After a serious accident, you may need information about the major regional hospitals

Albuquerque hospitals include Presbyterian HospitalLovelace Medical Center, and University of New Mexico Hospital.

Santa Fe hospitals include CHRISTUS St. Vincent Regional Medical Center.

As soon as possible, an injured person visiting from out of town should contact their insurance company to find out how out-of-network treatment is covered under their insurance policy. Since insurance policies often have unique provisions to deal with bicycle-accident injuries, it is important to review the policy and speak with the insurance adjuster to get clarification on coverage.

When a bicycle collision is serious or fatal, it is important to find an experienced bike accident attorney

When a bicycle accident, caused by the negligence of a motorist, results in serious injury or death, the next step is to find an experienced Albuquerque and Santa Fe bike accident attorney to start the financial recovery process by launching an insurance claim. Major injury or wrongful death claims are complicated and can be hard to manage without legal help. Having a personal injury lawyer on board is a great relief to injured bicyclists, or to the family left behind when an accident proves fatal. Since personal injury lawyers offer a free initial consultation and work on a contingency basis, meaning that there are no up-front costs and all fees are paid when the claim is settled, there is no downside to speaking with an experienced Albuquerque and Santa Fe personal injury attorney right away, to get help for an injured bicyclist.  

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Bicycle Accident Reports and News from the Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM Area