Bicycle Injury Lawyer, Criminal Defense Lawyer

Milwaukee

230 West Wells Street - Suite 706

Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53203


 

Tel - 414.207.4426

Madison

5976B Executive Drive

Fitchburg, WI 53719


 

Tel - 608.320.6710

 

Wisconsin Bicycle Deaths, Driver Hits Bicyclist From Behind

Last year (2015), saw the most bicycle deaths in Wisconsin in one year since the 1990's.  The vast majority of the Wisconsinsites who were killed riding bicycles were killed when distracted drivers drove into the bicyclist from behind.  As of September 2015, nine of the 13 people killed riding bicycles in Wisconsin were hit from behind by distracted drivers.  This type of crash used to be very rare, one of the least common.  However, anyone who has spent time on the road lately can attest that the majority of drivers of cars/trucks are no longer looking where they are going.  Instead, at red lights and on the roads, drivers are constantly looking at their phones, rearding texts, writing texts, emails, facebook etc.  

Examples of the increase in this very scary type of crash include:

1.         August 23, 2015, driver hits bicyclist from behind in Germantown WI and kills him;

2.         February 14, 2015 driver hits bicyclist from behind in Town of Leon WI and kills him;

3.         March 23, 2016 a driver hits bicyclist from behind near Antigo, WI, and kills her;

4.         June 8, 2015, a driver hits two bicyclists from behind in Waukesha County and kills both of them;

5.         February 26, 2016 a driver hits a bicyclist from behind in Oconto County and kills him;

6.         November 4, 2015, a driver hits bicyclist from behind in the Town of Rome, WI and kills her;

7.         September 13, 2015, a driver hits bicyclist from behind in Platteville, and kills him;

8.         March 2015, a driver hits bicyclist  from behind in Sheboygan and killed him.

9.         February 2015, a driver in Leon hit a bicyclist from behind and killed him.

 

So far, in 2016, the alarming trend of drivers killing bicyclists by driving into them at high rates of speed is continuing. Examples include:

 

1.  On July 15, 2016 a driver drove into a bicyclist in Cross Plains from behind killing her;

2. On June 22, 2016, a driver drove into a bicyclist from behind in Algoma, killing him;

3. On March 23, 2016, a driver drove into a bicyclist from behind in near Antigo, WI killing her;

3. On February 26, 2016, a driver drove into a bicyclist from behind in Octono, killing him;

 

The most disturbing part of these preventable deaths is that the police/sheriffs/ and the public accept them as "accidents."  In one of the above deaths, a sheriff stated, "This is an unfortunate tragedy."  "It appears that there was vision obstruction due to the sun rising."  Killing a human being while not looking where you are going is not "an accident."  An accident is something beyond a person's control such as a tire blowing out unexpectedly and the car pulls to the right into the bike lane.  The law in Wisconsin holds that a person must reduce their speed or stop if their vision is obstructed.  There is no law that says you can drive into a bicyclist and as long as you are facing the sun, it isn't your fault.  Wisconsin law requires a minimum of three feet space before attempting to pass a bicyclist and allows drivers to cross a yellow line into oncoming traffic to safely pass a bicyclist.

As a bicyclist who rides on roads with cars traveling 55+ mph, the above trend scares me very much.  I have noticed a huge increase in the number of clients I have that have been struck from behind, something that used to be very very rare.  If you or a loved one gets hit from behind and are looking for help please contact me. I have experience helping people get justice after crashes like the above including subpoeaning phone records, obtaining video, finding witnesses not identified by the police/sheriffs, and other related experience.  I am happy to speak with people for free and answer any questions you have.  As a cyclist myself, I take pride in holding drivers accountable for distracted driving.  I am hoping to help change the laws in Wisconsin to better protect bicyclists.