While many probably consider cycling to be a seasonal activity, the fact of the matter is that motorists share the roads with cyclists all year-round; even during Toronto’s inhospitable winter months.
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Toronto, Canada (PRWEB) November 28, 2013
Rotondo Law Firm (http://www.RotondoLaw.com), a Greater Toronto Area (GTA) personal injury law firm and GTA wrongful death law firm, is warning cyclists to be cautious after Toronto police reported an alarmingly high number of traffic fatalities.
So far, there have been 54 traffic fatalities in Toronto in 2013, compared to 44 in all of 2012. By this same time last year, Toronto police had investigated 38 traffic-related deaths—a year-over-year increase of 42%. (Source: Misener, K., “Police chief ‘concerned’ with high number of traffic fatalities in Toronto,” 680 News web site, November 21, 2013; http://www.680news.com/2013/11/21/police-chief-concerned-with-high-number-of-traffic-fatalities-in-toronto/.)
The latest fatality occurred on November 20, when 23-year-old cyclist Adrian Dudzicki, one of Canada’s top squash players, was struck and killed by a BMW at Sheppard Avenue and Allen Road. The 20-year-old driver of the car was unhurt.
Dudzicki’s death marked the 54th traffic fatality in Toronto this year, equalling 2008 for the most traffic-related deaths in the city in the last five years. This fatality also marks the most involving cyclists (four) since 2009. (Source: Brown, J., “Driver charged in North York cycling fatality,” The Toronto Star November 20, 2013.)
“While many probably consider cycling to be a seasonal activity, the fact of the matter is that motorists share the roads with cyclists all year-round; even during Toronto’s inhospitable winter months,” says P. Michael Rotondo, lead counsel at Rotondo Law Firm. “Even when a cyclist takes every precaution, wears safety gear, and has the right-of-way, that doesn’t mean they’re operating in a safe environment.”
When it comes to collisions involving motorists and cyclists, Rotondo says, the latter tends to come out on the losing end. Injuries can include brain injury, spinal cord and orthopaedic injuries, internal injuries, abrasions, loss of limbs, and death.
“In Ontario, the Highway Traffic Act states that in the case of a collision between a cyclist and motorist, it is presumed that the driver failed to follow the rules of the road, and it is up to the driver to prove any injuries or damage were not a result of negligence or improper conduct,” he adds. “If a cyclist is hit by a motor vehicle, the driver has to prove to the courts they did nothing wrong.” (Source: DiNovo, C., “Bill 74, Highway Traffic Amendment Act (Safe Passing Bicycles), 2010,” Legislative Assembly of Ontario web site, May 18, 2010; http://www.ontla.on.ca/web/bills/bills_detail.do?locale=en&Intranet=&BillID=2364.)
“The rules of the road apply to everybody,” Rotondo continues. “In fact, a cyclist involved in a motor vehicle accident is entitled to the same compensation that passengers injured in a car accident are eligible for. Unfortunately, most cyclists are not aware of this. In Ontario, a cyclist can claim both the mandatory benefits and also sue the at-fault driver for compensation.”
“After seeking immediate medical attention, cyclists injured in an auto accident need to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer right away. That’s because the injured party has a 120-day window to send a notice of intent to pursue legal action against the other party,” Rotondo concludes.
Rotondo Law Firm is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Toronto and has been providing personal injury law services to clients since 1999. Over the last 14 years, Rotondo Law Firm has been providing its clients with the highest level of legal service, spanning many areas of personal injury law, including trip and fall accidents; motor vehicle, pedestrian, motorcycle, and bicycle accidents; brain injuries; air flight accidents; accident benefit claims; and wrongful dismissal claims. Whether their clients have been injured in a car accident, are owed compensation from insurance, or have been wrongfully dismissed, Rotondo Law will work diligently to ensure they receive the settlement they deserve. More information on Rotondo Law Firm is available by visiting the firm's web site at http://www.RotondoLaw.com or by calling 416-868-0900.