Archives for April 2011

Are You Suffering from a Concussion after a Bicycle Accident?

San Francisco Concussion-Bicycle Accident Attorneys

Contrary to what many people believe, a concussion is a serious injury with myriad possible long-term side effects. Why? Well, the brain is surrounded by fluid in the skull. In this regard, you can liken your brain to a sponge floating in a bucket of water — while you’re walking with the bucket, the sponge tends to stay in one place as it is carried along with the water it is floating in. However, if you suddenly come to a stop, the sponge will bounce against the side of the bucket, carried by the momentum of the water. Similarly in a concussion, a blow to the head causes the brain to impact the inside of the skull, causing bruising and trauma to it as a result.

Concussions after Bicycle Accidents

After a bicycle accident, it’s not uncommon for a bicyclist to suffer from a concussion, regardless of whether or not the cyclist hit his or her head or was wearing a helmet. In many cases, the sudden violent motion involved in being thrown from a bicycle can cause a concussion.

While a concussion may initially appear to be mild, it can be difficult to predict what its full impact will be over weeks or months, especially if you’ve had previous concussions. Here, understanding the potential long-term side effects of a concussion is important when evaluating whether or not a settlement or award offered by an insurance company is proportional to your injuries and costs.

Understanding the Long-term Side Effects of a Concussion

The long-term side effects of a concussion can include:

  • Memory loss
  • Loss of taste and smell
  • Chronic pain
  • Cognitive impairment
  • Tingling in the extremities
  • Headaches
  • Equilibrium problems

While not every concussion results in these side effects, there is always a possibility that in the months following a concussion after a bicycle accident, these or other symptoms will manifest themselves. That’s why it’s important to work with an experienced bicycle accident attorney who understands the side effects associated with concussions and other head injuries.

Suffering from a Concussion? Contact Weber & Nierenberg Today

If you’ve been struck while riding your bicycle, contact San Francisco bicycle accident attorneys at Weber & Nierenberg today. We can review your case and investigate the circumstances surrounding your accident if the car driver’s insurer tries to shift blame onto you. We’re also prepared to work with neurologists and other medical professionals when questions arise regarding the scope and nature of your concussion. Call today at 1-866-288-6010. We can help you protect your rights and interests.

Negotiating the S-curve — Caltrans Liability for Dangerous Roads

San Francisco Bay Area Dangerous Roads Attorney

On November 9, 2009, Hayward resident Tahir Fakhar lost control of his truck along the S-curve approaching the Bay Bridge. His truck, carrying a load of peaches, veered out of control and toppled over a three-foot guardrail, falling 200 feet to the Yerba Buena Island below.

Mr. Fakhar’s family filed a lawsuit against Caltrans, alleging that an improper road design in the S-curve contributed to Mr. Fakhar’s death. While Mr. Fakhar was traveling 10 miles per hour over the posted speed limit, his family’s attorneys have pointed out that there were 43 accidents involving the S-curve prior to Mr. Fakhar’s fatal crash.

The Response of Caltrans

Interestingly enough, after Mr. Fakhar’s accident, Caltrans added flashing radar signs, additional speed warnings, rumble strips and a raised barrier along the curve in question. On the day of the fatal accident, Caltrans claimed excessive speed was to blame, making it more difficult for Mr. Fakhar to properly negotiate the curve. According to investigators working with the California Highway Patrol, Mr. Fakhar was likely traveling at 50 mph at the time of his accident — 10 mph over the posted speed limit and 15 mph over the maximum speed recommended for the sharpest curves.

At the time of the lawsuit, officials for Caltrans had nothing to say regarding the fact that after Mr. Fakhar’s accident and Caltrans’ actions to increase safety, not a single accident occurred along the S-curve.

Unsafe Road Design — a Contributing Factor in Fatal Accidents

The extent to which a dangerous or defective road design may be a contributing factor in a car accident may not always be obvious. Accident investigators can evaluate the presence of certain risk factors like dips in the road, an absence of guardrails, posted speed limits, the grading of a road or an obscured line of sight approaching an intersection.

As in the case of Mr. Fakhar’s accident, Caltrans is unlikely to admit fault when defective road design is discovered as a contributing factor in an accident. For these reasons, it’s important to work with an experienced dangerous road design attorney who can gather information, work with investigators and expose negligence on the part of Caltrans.

Contact Bay Area Dangerous Road Design Attorneys Weber & Nierenberg

If you’ve been seriously injured or have lost a family member in a car, truck or motorcycle accident that involved a dangerous stretch of road, contact San Francisco personal injury attorneys Weber & Nierenberg today to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.

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1 Sansome Street, Suite 3500 San Francisco, CA 94104
P. 415-788-3900

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P. 510-663-6000

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