E-Bike Injuries: What to Do After an Electric Bicycle Accident

electric bike accident

Electric bikes, or e-bikes, have taken the world by storm, offering a convenient and eco-friendly way to navigate city streets and bike trails.

However, as the popularity of e-bikes continues to rise, so do the risks associated with accidents.

Recent Increase in E-Bike Accidents

Over the past few years, e-bike accidents and injuries have skyrocketed.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, e-bike injuries increased 21% in 2022.

One tragic example is the case of a 12-year-old boy who sustained severe injuries after his e-bike crashed into a 66-year-old woman in Key Biscayne, Florida. The youngster now faces homicide charges after she died.

As more people embrace e-bikes as a mode of transportation, we must understand the potential risks of accidents and take necessary precautions to avoid them.

Why Are E-Bike Accidents Happening More Often?

Several factors contribute to the increasing number of e-bike accidents:

  • Lack of safety standards and regulations for e-bikes.
  • Inexperienced riders and insufficient safety education.
  • E-bike battery malfunctions and fires.
  • Inadequate cycling infrastructure and bike lanes.
  • Reckless riding and disregard for traffic laws.

These issues highlight the need for better city infrastructure to accommodate the growing number of e-bike users.

Common Injuries Sustained in E-Bike Accidents

E-bike accidents provoke a wide range of injuries in our state, some of which can be life-altering or even fatal.

Common harm caused by an electric bike crash include :

E-bike riders must wear helmets and protective gear to minimize the risk of serious injury. You also have to be on the lookout for pedestrians and other motorists when using your electric bicycle on public roads and sidewalks.

What You Need to Know About E-Bike Accidents and Illinois Law

Specific statutes and regulations apply to e-bike accidents in Illinois. Let’s take a closer look at how the Prairie State deals with this new recreational vehicle trend.

Classification

First and foremost, Illinois law groups e-bikes into three distinct categories:

  • Class 1: E-bikes with pedal assistance and a maximum speed of 20 mph.
  • Class 2: E-bikes with throttle assistance and a maximum speed of 20 mph.
  • Class 3: E-bikes with pedal assistance and a maximum speed of 28 mph.

The Illinois Vehicle Code (625 ILCS 5/11-1517 (g)) also states that a person may not operate any class of low-speed electric bicycle on a public sidewalk.

Rights and Responsibilities

Under the same statute, e-bike riders have the same rights and civil liability as traditional bicycle riders, meaning people can operate them on Illinois streets, bike lanes, and bike paths.

However, local authorities can restrict e-bike access in certain areas. So, you must check local ordinances before hitting the streets with your electric bike.

Legal Liability Statutes

Similar to bicycle accidents, several key statutes come into play when you’re involved in an Illinois e-bike crash.

  • 625 ILCS 5/11-1502: Outlines the rights and duties of bicyclists, including e-bike riders in general.
  • 625 ILCS 5/11-1505: Addresses the requirements for equipment and emphasizes the importance of following traffic laws and riding responsibly.
  • 735 ILCS 5/13-202: Sets the time limit for filing a personal injury lawsuit in Illinois, known as the statute of limitations. In most cases, you must file a claim two years from the accident date.

Shared Fault Rules

Illinois follows a “modified comparative negligence” rule. This law means that if the court finds you partially at fault for an e-bike accident, it will reduce your compensation by the percentage of your fault.

However, insurers and juries may bar you from recovering damages if you’re more than 51% at fault.

Consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney who understands the Illinois e-bike laws after receiving electric bike injuries.

Your legal counsel will help you file a claim, gather evidence, and fight for the compensation you deserve.

What to Do If You’re Involved in an E-Bike Accident

After a bicycle accident, take the following steps:

  1. Seek medical attention immediately.
  2. Document the accident scene and gather evidence.
  3. Contact the police and file an accident report.
  4. Consult with a personal injury lawyer specializing in e-bike accidents.
  5. Understand your rights and options for seeking compensation.

Remember, your health and well-being should always be your top priority.

Get the Legal Support You Deserve for E-Bike Injuries

The injuries sustained in an e-bike accident can have devastating impacts, both physically and financially. From traumatic brain injuries and broken bones to hefty medical bills and lost wages, the damages can upend your life entirely. You deserve justice and fair compensation to cover the full extent of harm caused by the negligent party’s actions.

At Onward Injury Law, our e-bike accident attorneys understand the unique challenges these cases present in Central Illinois. Don’t attempt to navigate this process alone. Contact us today for a free consultation and rely on our advocacy from start to finish.

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