Cycling Helmets and the Law
The Present Legal Position
Presently in the UK, wearing a helmet whilst cycling is not a legal requirement. However, it is recommended to do so by the Highway Code and Transport for London. Adults are able to decide whether or not they want to wear them.
There is no guarantee that helmet use leads to safer cycling and a reduced number of accidents. Some experts believe that use of helmets is an essential part of road safety and a cyclist should not cycle without one. Other studies have shown that better things could be done to make the roads safer for cyclists and that the focus on helmets may be a distraction. Improvements to road safety could include creating more cycling paths and widening cycle lanes.
If when cycling you are injured as a result of someone else’s fault, you may be able to recover compensation. In some instances, the compensation can be significant, but it is vital to know that any compensation awards could potentially be reduced if you were not wearing a helmet and the court considers that this factor contributed to your injuries. This is known as contributory negligence and is regularly raised by defendants in cycling claims. The court has the ability to limit your award to reflect the level of your responsibility. Such compensation claims may be reduced by as much as 50%.
In addition to the use of a helmet, other factors taken into account will be road conditions, speed, and the force of the collision.
Why choose Edwards Duthie Shamash for your cycling accident claim?
We have many years of experience in handling cycling claims. We have recovered millions of pounds on behalf of thousands of cyclists and handle such claims on a No Win, No Fee basis. Speak to one of our expert bicycle accident solicitors for a free initial assessment.
Such claims can be brought as a result of a collision with another road user including motorists and cyclists. Claims can also be pursued as a result of defective road conditions.
Levels of compensation and what to claim for
Each case will be considered on its merits and the compensation that you receive will be determined by various factors including:
- The speed of your recovery
- The extent and severity of your injuries
- The value and the damage sustained to your bike and any personal possessions
- Whether you have incurred any loss of earnings
- Medical care and rehabilitation
We are able to recover on your behalf various expenses including:
- Loss of earnings
- Travelling expenses
- Bike repairs
- Clothing damage
We have acted for various claimants who have been involved in serious accidents. One such client was knocked off his bike at a road junction and sustained a serious head injury. He required extensive rehabilitation, medical treatment costs and adaptations to his vehicle and home. We recovered damages on his behalf that enabled him to continue to pay for medical care in future and for adaptations to be carried out to his home.
The usual time limit for pursuing such claims is three years from the date of your accident. If possible, at the time of the accident, always ensure that you ring 999 and if possible exchange details with another party. If you are able, you should also attempt to speak to witnesses and obtain their contact details and use your phone to obtain photographic evidence of the accident scene and vehicles involved.
In any event, we recommend you get in touch with our accident solicitors as urgently as possible to discuss matters.