While cycling can be a great way to get outside and enjoy the summer, with the added benefit of providing some exercise, cyclists who share roads with motorized (and larger) vehicles, unfortunately, are putting themselves in a somewhat vulnerable position. Likely, some Washington residents have experienced feelings of trepidation while cycling on the side of a roadway while traffic whizzes by, sometimes only inches away. Unfortunately, a cyclist was seriously injured recently when a woman driving a car hit him. He may now have cause to pursue a personal injury lawsuit.
According to the Washington State Patrol, the incident happened early on a Tuesday afternoon when a bicyclist was traveling south on State Highway 525 north of Freeland, and a woman driving a car drifted onto the shoulder and struck the bicyclist. The bicycle and the vehicle ended up in a nearby ditch. The bicyclist, a 24-year-old man, was airlifted to a hospital in Everett. Reportedly, he had suffered a broken leg in the crash, and according to a hospital spokesperson, he was listed in critical condition. Police have said the driver who hit the bicycle, a 26-year-old woman, was taken to the same hospital after she complained of abdominal pain, but she was later released.
Investigators are continuing to look into the cause of the crash. A police spokesperson has said the driver is under investigation for suspicion of vehicular assault. Although police do not yet know if drugs or alcohol were factors in the collision, apparently, two separate witnesses who were in different locations reported spotting the car being driven in a way that suggested the driver was impaired.
Certainly, bicyclists who ride on the side of a road are at some risk of being injured or even killed by the driver of a passing car or truck, especially if they are traveling on a busy highway. But in this incident, the investigative evidence may indicate that the driver who struck the cyclist was impaired at the time. If that is the case, the cyclist may consider exercising his right to pursue the matter through the Washington civil justice system. An experienced personal injury lawyer can review his case details and advise him of his options.