The Biggest Threat to Iowa Bicyclists
One Friday evening, 60-year-old Joleen Stork was riding her bike on a popular path in Glidden Iowa when a Chevy Silverado, driven by 83-year-old Walter James Wenck, drove up behind her and struck her from the rear. The Des Moines Register reported that Stork was ejected from her bicycle into a nearby ditch, where state patrol officers pronounced her dead at the scene.
Iowa state data shows that cars and trucks are increasingly endangering bicyclists across Iowa. Between 2005 and 2014—nine years—there were over 300 bicycle accidents involving cars or trucks. In 2015, nearly 50 bicycle crashes involving cars or trucks had occurred in Des Moines, alone—according to officers at Des Moines police department. More than half of Iowa’s accidents occurred when a bicyclist was entering or crossing a roadway, and more than 60 percent of crashes were at intersections or marked crosswalks.
Although Iowa’s bicycle fatality rate is relatively low—one fatality per million residents—compared with other states, the cycling community and others are still alarmed by the number of crashes that occur in their state. More to the point, Iowa state data reveals that bicycle and motor vehicle accidents are largely becoming a city problem, as 93 percent of accidents over the last decade were reported in urban areas. Seventy-three percent of accidents were reported municipal roads, or city territory.
What to Do If You Are Involved In a Bicycle-Motor Vehicle Accident
The following are important steps to take if you are ever involved in a bicycle accident:
- Always wait for the police to respond to the accident scene so that an official report will be filed;
- Leave your bike and other damaged property in the same state it was after the accident, and take photos of all your damaged equipment;
- Make sure that you have the driver’s name and contact info, as well as the names and contact info of any witnesses;
- Seek prompt medical treatment for your potential injuries, and keep a journal of your symptoms; and
- Communicate with a personal injury attorney who understands bicycling before contacting the insurance company.
Contact an Experienced Iowa Attorney
At Noyes Law Office, P.C., our experienced attorneys will discuss your situation and go over the options available to you, as well as work with insurance companies and other parties involved in your case to make sure all your needs are handled quickly and appropriately. Please note that there are time limitations for filing accident lawsuits in Iowa so you should take action as soon as possible to protect your right to file a lawsuit.
If you were involved in a bicycle-motor vehicle accident and are suffering from injuries or sustained damage to your bike, contact an Iowa attorney to seek compensation for you. At the Noyes Law Office, P.C., we are experienced in seeking compensation for personal injuries. Contact us at 641-472-3236, or visit us online and fill out a free case evaluation to learn more about what your injuries are worth.