Call

Blog

Law
02

Blog

Bicycle Crashes are Not “Accidents.”

We've used the word "accident" on our site for years. As of today, that changes.

The crash that sent our webmaster and blogger Mike Dayton to the ICU (still in critical condition) and that injured three others has garnered much attention around the country.  We have reported on his condition, and the weak charges filed against the reckless driver.

Thanks to so many for your kind words and thoughts to Mike.  We have received thousands of messages of support and concern. It is a comfort to be reminded of the power of community.  Cyclists are the best.

The attention prompted an overdue, critical look at our site, the words we actually use, and the message we send.

We have long argued that bicycle crashes are not “accidents.”  North Carolina attorney Ann Groninger (who proudly represents Mike) has made the point on these pages.   Lawyers in our Network have represented injured cyclists in thousands of cases.  We know, first hand, that our clients are rarely injured “accidentally.”  On the contrary, in the overwhelming number of occurrences, a driver made a choice (or failed to make a choice), and that choice caused injuries, often life-changing, sometimes fatal.

Let me / Peter get personal.  My brother, Jim, was killed on his bicycle by an underaged driver running a red light.  It was no accident, because 10 minutes before, the driver’s mother decided to give her unlicensed daughter the keys to drive to school.

Likewise, we know that the crash that has left Mike in such dire condition was no accident.

Same is true in so many of our other cases: read about Matthew Burke, Patrick Wanninkhof, and Dale Thomas, just to name three.

And yet, as was pointed out by a few of you out there, we still clung to the word “accident” on the Bike Law site.  Most noticeably, we titled a box on each page: “Report a Bicycle Accident.”  We appreciate that you guys care enough our mission to point out our inconsistency.

Yes, we used the word “accident” on every page of our site.  We did so on purpose.  We did so in order to be more visible to Google.  In the current state of legal marketing, lots of personal injury lawyers (most with no track record in cycling or cycling advocacy) are flooding the internet, trying to attract injured cyclists.  Because “accident” is by far the most searched relevant term, because “bicycle accident” is what is used by the general public, we used it too.  We want to be visible, and we want to represent injured cyclists, regardless of whether they know or understand the distinction in word usage.

But as of today, we are changing.  It is no longer ‘Report a Bicycle Accident.”  It is “Report a Bicycle Crash.”  And we will be making similar changes across the site in coming days.  We want to be true to you guys, true to our mission, and be a part of changing how bicycle crashes are viewed and understood.

We realize that the distinction does make a difference.

It is worth quibbling over semantics.

A BICYCLE CRASH IS NOT AN ACCIDENT.

PERIOD.

Comments

WALLER CRASH
Rachael Maney Nov 08, 2021

WALLER 6 UPDATE: November 20, 2021 The teenage son of Jason and Jennifer Arnold, who, with their permission, was operating his parents’ F-250 diesel truck when he plowed into our 6 clients while they were riding their bicycles on September 25th, 2021 in Waller, Texas, was released to his parents on Thursday afternoon (11/18/21) after […]

Read More
Atlanta Bike Crash
Peter Wilborn Oct 25, 2021

Many of you have heard about the horrific multi-victim crash from October 7, 2021, in which a Chattanooga driver brutally plowed her car into a group of 5 pedestrians as they were crossing a street, causing catastrophic and life changing injuries. In the chaotic aftermath of running a red light and almost killing an entire […]

Read More
Waller Bike Crash Carnage
Rachael Maney Oct 02, 2021

PRESS RELEASE FROM BIKE LAW’S NATIONAL DIRECTOR RACHAEL MANEY In light of the recent Waller Bike Crash in Texas, and in an effort to help untangle and unpack some of the emotionally-charged comments, questions, and inaccurate assumptions being made, we want to update you on the parts that we can share. I hope that this […]

Read More
Brother James
Peter Wilborn Sep 29, 2021

23 years ago today, the world lost my brother Jim. He was killed on his bike by an under-aged driver who blew through a red light. While the years don’t really blunt the loss, they foster gratitude for the gifts left behind. My brother blessed me with so much, but 3 things stand out:   […]

Read More
Family bicycle charity
Bike Law Aug 17, 2021

GUEST POST BY BIKE LAW AMBASSADOR KURT AREHART The bike charity Raleigh Community Kickstand, or just Kickstand for short, is a four year-old project organized under Oaks & Spokes, a 501(c)(3) engaged in fostering cycling in Raleigh. Kickstand channels donated bicycles to low-income and homeless members of our community whose lives can be improved with […]

Read More
Contributory negligence Bike crash
Ann Groninger May 08, 2021

If you’ve met me, you’ve heard talk about contributory negligence many times, including here and here and here. My vocation and my passion as a bike crash attorney is representing injured bicyclists and families of bicyclists who have been killed by careless drivers. Contributory negligence severely impairs the right of these individuals and bicyclists to […]

Read More
Asian-American Triathlete
Rachael Maney May 04, 2021

Bike Month 2021 is setting the bar pretty high. Two days ago, Sika Henry became the first Black woman to earn her pro card in the sport of triathlon. And today, Bike Law and I are honored and excited to announce our sponsorship of the only Asian-American racing on the professional triathlon circuit, Clarice Chastang […]

Read More
Cycliq video close call
Rachael Maney Apr 22, 2021

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 23, 2021 Jon Korin, President Bicycle Advocates for Annapolis & Anne Arundel County (‘BikeAAA’) 443-685-4103, [email protected]   Rachael Maney, National Director Bike Law 410-382-7803, [email protected]   DRIVER CONVICTED ON CYCLIQ VIDEO EVIDENCE Christopher Lee Bradshaw of Lothian, MD was convicted of violating Maryland’s 3-foot bicycle passing law and negligent driving on […]

Read More
cycling friendship
Ann Groninger Apr 21, 2021

Cycling friendships are wonderful benefit to our sport and community.  A major part of our work as bicycle “accident” lawyers means putting a value on losses that our clients suffer as a result of injures from crashes. When it comes to past and future medical expenses, lost income and other financial losses, the job is […]

Read More
Load More