Author Archives: triadlawyer

Cary Bicyclist Who Was Seriously Injured Thinks Driver Was Distracted at Time of Accident

 Cyclist Craig Purcell remained hospitalized at WakeMed Thursday – almost a week after nearly losing his life in a car on bike collision. Mr. Purcell was cycling on Cary Parkway near Kildaire Farm Road in Cary in October when the accident occurred.

"I saw the black car using the left hand turn lane to come across the road," Purcell recalled. "All I could do was brace for impact."

Purcell said the collision’s impact threw him in an opposite direction from his original direction.

"My body hit his car. I could hear it. The next thing I knew, I was flying through the air. I hit the ground. As soon as I hit the ground, I knew I was in trouble," the bicyclist said.

Purcell suffered multiple injuries that includes broken ribs and a collapsed lung. He will undergo months of rehabilitation.

According to the accident report, speed was not a factor in the crash. The driver who crashed into Purcell was cited for failure to yield in a turn. Purcell believes the driver was likely distracted.

Purcell and other cyclists say there are too many accidents and near misses between cars and people on bikes. He's urging more respect and attention to safety.

"I have a right to that road just like any other car does," said Purcell.

By law, Cyclists are required to follow the same rules on the road as drivers, and drivers are required to treat bikes the same way they would any other vehicle.

"Slow down. Share the road. Respect that we're out there, even if you don't like to do it. As cyclists, we have to share the road too," Purcell offered.

Sanders Law Firm, PLLC


Tagged ,

Jury finds for Plaintiff Bicyclist in Motor Vehicle Wrongul Death Accident in Connecticut

NEW HAVEN, CT — The family of Jose Mauricio Campos Thursday won a jury verdict of nearly $2.3 million in a wrongful death lawsuit against a hotel corporation and its employee, the driver of a van that struck Campos. Mr. Campos was riding his bike around 7:00 pm on 9-15-08 when hit by the hotel van driven by a Mr. Coleman.

Coleman was a defendant in the civil suit, along with his employer, LaQuinta Inn and Suites. The driver and the employer-hotel were found to be equally liable.

Campos, who was NOT wearing a helmet, was thrown to the pavement by the impact and suffered a serious head injury. He died three days later. The plaintiff was his wife, Gregoria Campos of West Haven. The Camposes had three sons, now adults.

The six jurors announced their verdict just after noon in New Haven Superior Court in a trial presided over by Judge Terence Zemetis.

The driver was traveling 40 mph in a 25 mph zone. In addition, it was alleged in the complaint that the defendant driver was using a cell phone at the time of the accident, in violation of CT state law. While not illegal in NC, yet, Sanders Law Firm includes claims for gross negligence when a defendant driver is using a cell phone at the time of the accident. This is because the driver is distracted while serving their own self interest.

Mr. Campos, the bicyclist, may or may not have run a stop sign, it was not known for sure.

The jurors ruled both Coleman and Campos were at fault in the accident. But the jurors said Coleman, and thus LaQuinta as well, were responsible for 58 percent of the negligence and Campos was responsible for 42 percent. Connecticut is a comparative negligence state whereas NC is a contributory negligence state. That means if the jurors in a NC trial find the plaintiff bicyclist was also negligent in his death or injuries, the court would not award the injured plaintiff any monies for death or injuries. NC is one of a handful of states that still has contributory negligence as the rule.

Mills said after the verdict that Campos was found to share some of the negligence probably because “no one can say for sure” if he obeyed a stop sign. According to Mills, Coleman did not have a stop sign.

The jurors awarded $1,709,840 in damages to the victim’s estate and $580,000 in damages to the widow.

The complaint noted the widow had incurred medical and funeral expenses, loss of wages and permanent loss of his earning capacity. The plaintiff’s attorneys also said she suffered loss of her husband’s moral support and companionship.


If you or someone you know was injured while biking, contact the attorneys at Sanders Law Firm, PLLC 336-724-4707



Tagged ,

Winston-Salem Bicycle Ordinances

Rules for bicycle riders in Winston-Salem. This is from the Winston-Salem ordinances. Note the rules at the end for using lamps at night at the bottom.


Bicycle Laws

Bicyclists in Winston-Salem have the same legal status as motor vehicles. Therefore, bicyclists have full rights to use the roadways and also have the responsibility to obey the laws and operate safely. The Winston-Salem Department of Transportation wants to encourage cyclists to become familiar with Winston-Salem biking laws and North Carolina biking laws designed to inform citizens on how to safely share the road. 

To view the North Carolina statewide laws, please visit the NCDOT Bicycle Laws of North Carolina website. (This link opens in a new window; the linked site is not part of the City of Winston-Salem.)

City of Winston-Salem Code – Article V  Bicycles

Sec. 42-281. Definition

The term bicycle, as used in this article, shall mean a device having two or three wheels in tandem, a steering handle, one or two saddle seats and pedals by which the vehicle is propelled.

Sec. 42-282. Applicability of traffic laws

Every person riding a bicycle upon a roadway shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of a vehicle by the laws of the state (G.S. 20-38(38)) declaring rules of the road applicable to vehicles or by the provisions of this chapter applicable to the driver of a vehicle, except as to special regulations in this chapter and except as to those provisions of law and ordinances which by their nature can have no application.

Sec. 42-283. Obedience to traffic control devices

(a) Any person operating a bicycle shall obey the instructions of official traffic control devices and traffic control signals applicable to vehicles, unless otherwise directed by a police officer.

(b) Whenever authorized signs are erected indicating that no right turn, left turn or U-turn is permitted, it shall be unlawful for any person operating a bicycle to disobey the direction of any such sign, except where such person dismounts from the bicycle to make any such turn, in which event such person shall then obey the regulations applicable to pedestrians.

Sec. 42-284. Manner of riding; restriction on number of persons riding

(a) It shall be unlawful for any person propelling a bicycle to ride other than astride a permanent and regular seat attached thereto.

b) It shall be unlawful for any person to use a bicycle to carry more persons at one time than the number for which it is designed and equipped.

Sec. 42-285. Riding on roadway

(a) Every person operating a bicycle upon a roadway shall ride as near to the right-hand side of the roadway as practicable, exercising due care when passing a standing vehicle or one proceeding in the same direction.

(b) It shall be unlawful for persons riding bicycles upon a roadway to ride more than two abreast.

Sec. 42-286. Right-of-way of pedestrians; riding on sidewalk

(a) Whenever any person is riding a bicycle upon a sidewalk, such person shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian and shall give audible signal before overtaking and passing such pedestrian.

(b) It shall be unlawful for any person to ride a bicycle upon a sidewalk in the following locations or on the following streets;

    (1) Central business district.

    (2) Sunset Drive from First Street to Glade Street.

    (3) Liberty Street from 14th Street to 17th Street.

Sec. 42-287. Speed

It shall be unlawful for any person to operate a bicycle at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions then existing.

Sec. 42-288. Carrying packages or other article

It shall be unlawful for any person operating a bicycle to carry any package, bundle or article which prevents the rider from keeping at least one hand upon the handlebars.

Sec. 42-289. Parking

It shall be unlawful for any person to park a bicycle upon a street other than upon the roadway against the curb or upon the sidewalk in a rack to support the bicycle or against a building or at the curb, in such manner as to afford the least obstruction to pedestrian traffic.

Sec. 42-290. Lamps and other equipment

(a) Every bicycle, when in use at nighttime, shall be equipped with a lamp on the front which shall emit a white light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet to the front and with a red reflector on the rear of a type which shall be visible from a distance of at least 300 feet to the rear when directly in front of lawful upper beams of headlamps on a motor vehicle. A lamp emitting a red light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear may be used in addition to the red reflector.

(b) Every bicycle shall be equipped with working, functional, adequate brakes.


Tagged ,

12,000 Specialized Bicycles Recalled due to front forks breaking


  The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.  It is illegal to resell or attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.


Name of product: Bicycles

Units: About 12,000

Distributor: Specialized Bicycle Components Inc., of Morgan Hill, Calif.

Manufacturer: Kinesis, of China

Hazard: The front fork can break, posing fall and injury hazards to riders.

Incidents/Injuries: Specialized has received four reports of front forks breaking, resulting in facial fractures, head and shoulder injuries and cuts.

Description: This recall involves some 2008 and 2009 models women's and men's Globe model bicycles. Recalled models include the Globe Elite, Globe Sport, Globe Sport Disc, Globe Centrum Comp, Globe Centrum Elite, Globe City 6, Globe Vienna 3, Globe Vienna 3 Disc, Globe Vienna 4, Globe Vienna Deluxe 3, Globe Vienna Deluxe 4, Globe Vienna Deluxe 5 and Globe Vienna Deluxe 6 bicycles. The bicycles were sold in various colors, including gun, silver, black, khaki, navy, bone, blue, charcoal, burgundy and gold. The brand name "Specialized" is on the lower frame tube and the model name is on various locations on the bicycle frame.

Sold at: Authorized Specialized retailers nationwide from July 2007 to July 2012 for between $550 and $1,100.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop riding these bicycles and return them to an authorized Specialized retailer for the free installation of a free replacement fork.

Consumer Contact:  For additional information, contact Specialized toll-free at (877) 808-8154 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, or visit the company's website at and click on Support/Safety Notices.

Photos available at

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. Please tell us about your experience with the product on


PR Newswire (

Tagged ,

Bike Accident Statistics. Helmet statistics

Bike Accident Statistics. Biking Attorneys.

Submitted by kirksanderslaw on Fri, 02/25/2011 – 10:16am

bicycle accident lawyer Bicyclist deaths bike crash attorney biking injury car wreck attorney fatal crash attorney Kirk Sanders severe brain damage

The attorneys at Sanders Law Firm, PLLC have handled cases ranging from broken humerus requiring a permanent rod to quadraplegia with severe brain damage. If you have a biking accident, call us to discuss at 336-724-4707 or email We'll evaluate your case at no cost to you. We represent bicyclists statewide in North Carolina (NC). If the event happened out of state, we will assist you in finding local counsel out-of-state.

Now here's some interesting statistics on bike accidents and helmet protection:

This comes from the Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute, which compiled the data from multiple sources. Don't let this deter you from riding. We need more riders and less car drivers.

Interestingly, it should be no surprise, based on a number of contributing factors, that you are far safer to WEAR A HELMET. I believe in helmets. One took the impact for me. I still had a concussion, but would hate to think what would have resulted without the helmet.

Remember: helmets are good for one impact, then they need to be disposed.

First, a summary of US statistics available from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration: Traffic Safety Facts – 2009 Data (released in 2010, and still the most recent)

    * 630 bicyclists died on US roads in 2009 (718 in 2008, 1,003 in 1975)

    * 74 were 14 or younger, a reduction of 58 per cent from the 178 killed in 2000.

    * Bicyclist deaths represented 2 per cent of all 2009 traffic fatalities.

    * 51,000 bicyclists were injured in traffic in 2009 (Up sharply from 43,000 in 2007)

And some more statistics from 2008 data also released in 2010:

    * One-seventh of the cyclists killed were between 5 and 15 years old.

    * Average age of a bicyclist killed on US roads: 41

    * Average age of a bicyclist injured on US roads: 31

    * Bicyclists 15 and under killed: 93. Injured: 13,000

    * Bicyclists 16 to 34 killed: 168. Injured 20,000

    * Bicyclists 35 to 54 killed: 270. Injured 13,000

    * Bicyclists 55 and older killed: 179. Injured 6,000

    * Alcohol involvement was reported in 37% of 2008 deaths.

    * Nearly one fourth (23%) of the cyclists killed were drunk. (BAC over .08 g.dl)

    * Fatal crashes typically were urban (69%) and at intersections (64%).

The NHTSA data is broken down by state on their Web site, and there is more detail available.

For 2008 child injuries, including state breakdowns, see this page on the NHTSA server.

Statistics from the Children's Safety Network June, 2009

Bicycle injuries and deaths affect children and young people more often than any other age group.

    * In 2005, 44 percent of nonfatal bicycle injuries occurred in children and youth age 5 to 20.

    * In 2005, the rate per million of nonfatal bicycle injuries in children and youth age 5 to 20 was 462.17 compared to 153.3 overall.

    * In 2005, children and youth age 0 to 20 made up 23.4 percent of bicycle fatalities.

    * In 2005, the rate per million of bicycle fatalities in children and youth age 5 to 20 was 4.37 compared to 2.64 overall.

    * In 2005, children under 15 accounted for 53 percent of bicycle injuries treated in emergency deparments.

    * From 1999 to 2002, the average annual cost of bicycle fatalities in children and youth age 0 to 19 was $1.03 billion.

    * From 1999 to 2002, the average annual cost of nonfatal bicycle injuries in children and youth age 0 to 19 was $3.6 billion.

Young cyclists are more likely than adult cyclists to die of head injuries, most of which are caused by motor vehicle collisions. Among children and youth age 0 to 19 in 2000:

    * Head injuries accounted for 62.6 percent of bicycle fatalities.

    * Collisions with motor vehicles accounted for 75.7 percent of bicycle fatalities.

    * 61.7 percent of motor vehicle collision deaths were due to head injury.

Statistics from the US Consumer Product Safety Commission August, 2008

CPSC staff has reports of an annual average of 80 children under 16 years of age who died in bicycle-related incidents in recent years.

About half of the 500,000 bicycle-related emergency room-treated injuries in 2007 involved children under the age of 16. When taking part in other recreational activities, CPSC recommends that you wear the right helmet for that activity. Their "Which Helmet for Which Activity" publication helps parents choose the most appropriate helmet.

Statistics from the National Survey of Bicyclist and Pedestrian Attitudes and Behavior Released August, 2008, but based on a survey of 9,616 U.S. residents age 16 and older during the Summer of 2002.

A Gallup poll sponsored by the US Government to find out bicyclist and pedestrian behavior and attitudes. It took four years to publish. If the link above does not work, please use this one and then click on the Survey link under Pedestrians and Bicycles. (NHTSA often moves things.) We consider the findings on riding suspect because they are based on interviews rather than observational studies:

    * Half (50%) of bicyclists wear a helmet for at least some trips, with 35 percent using them for all or most trips.

    * Nine of 10 support helmet laws for children, while 62 percent support such laws for adults. (Here is an excerpt from the study with details.)

    * 46% of those 16 and older have regular access to a bicycle, with access increasing with increases in household income.

    * 43 percent ride a bicycle at least once in the summer months, making an estimated 2.484 billion trips during the summer of 2002.

    * Bicycling declines with age, with those under 20 most likely to bicycle and doing so more frequently, while the majority over 45 did not bicycle during the summer months.

    * The majority of bicycling trips were for recreation or for exercise, while just one in 5 trips were made to conduct errands (14%) or for commuting to work or school (5%).

    * About half of all trips (48%) were made on paved roads. An additional 13 percent were on shoulders of paved roads, and 5 percent on bike lanes on roads. One in 7 was made on sidewalks (14%) or bike trails/paths (13%).

    * Only half (50%) of bicyclists say bike paths are available in the area they ride, while 32 percent say bike lanes are available.

However, over half of those who do not use available bicycle paths or lanes say they don’t use them because they are not convenient, available, or go where they need to go.

    * More than one in 10 bicyclists (13%) felt threatened for their personal safety on the most recent day they rode their bicycle in the past 30 days in the summer of 2002, with 88 percent of these feeling threatened by motorists.

    * One in 5 bicyclists rode in the dark or near-dark for at least part of their trip, with 63 percent of these saying they took actions to make themselves more visible to motorists.

    * About 4 percent of bicyclists or 2.04 million, were injured while riding in the past two years. About .5 million of these were hit by a motorist.

    * Half (50%) of bicyclists wear a helmet for at least some trips, with 35 percent using them for all or most trips.

    * Nine of 10 support helmet laws for children, while 62 percent support such laws for adults.

    * Nearly half (48%) of those 16 and older are satisfied with how their local community is designed for making bicycle riding safer.

About as many (47%) would like to see changes including more bike lanes (38%) and bike paths (30%).

Statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Fatality Facts: Bicycles – 2008

Less than two percent of motor vehicle crash deaths are bicyclists.

The most serious injuries among a majority of those killed are to the head, highlighting the importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. Helmet use has been estimated to reduce head injury risk by 85 percent.

Twenty-one states and the District of Columbia have helmet laws applying to young bicyclists; none of these laws applies to all riders. Local ordinances in a few states require some or all bicyclists to wear helmets. A nationwide telephone survey estimated that state helmet use laws increase by 18 percent the probability that a rider will wear a helmet. Helmets are important for riders of all ages, especially because 86 percent of bicycle deaths are persons 16 and older.

The following facts are based on analysis of data from the U.S.

Department of Transportation's Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).

# A total of 714 bicyclists were killed in crashes with motor vehicles in 2008. Bicyclist deaths were down 29 percent since 1975 but were up

14 percent since 2003. The decline since 1975 among female bicyclists (50 percent) was larger than the decline among male bicyclists (24 percent).

Ninety-one percent of bicyclists killed in 2008 reportedly weren't wearing helmets.

Bicycle Deaths by Helmet Use 1994-2006

Year     No Helmet     Helmet     Total* Num

1994    776 (97%)    19 (2%)    796

1995    783 (95%)    34 (4%)    828

1996    731 (96%)    27 (4%)    761

1997    785 (97%)    23 (3%)    811

1998    741 (98%)    16 (2%)    757

1999    698 (93%)    42 (6%)    750

2000    622 (90%)    50 (7%)    689

2001    616 (84%)    60 (8%)    729

2002    589 (89%)    54 (8%)    663

2003    535 (85%)    58 (9%)    626

2004    602 (83%)    87 (12%)    722

2005    676 (86%)    77 (10%)    784

2006    730 (95%)    37 (5%)    669

2007    646 (92%)    50 (7%)    699

2008    653 (91%)    58 (8%)    714

Call Kirk Sanders at 336-724-4707 for your biking legal needs, including bicycle wreck injuries



Tagged ,

Bicycling Accidents: What to Do After a Bike Crash

Bicycling Accidents: What to Do After a Bike Crash

What to do if you are involved in a wreck with a car or truck: It’s important to take a few actions at the time and place of the accident. 

When bikes are involved with accidents with cars, there are usually big injuries. Try, if possible to keep your wits. The next few steps will have an incredible impact on whether and how much you might recover for your bodily injuries and your bicycle. This goes for attacks by dogs too.

If you’re injuries are not too severe, Wait for law enforcement to arrive at the scene.

You need a police report, even if you don’t initially think you’re hurt. The police will fill out a police report and detail the nature and cause of the accident. Many times bicyclists don’t realize they are hurt until hours after the accident.  Leaving the accident scene may mean there is no identification of the other driver and which party was at fault.

Wait to negotiate with the driver. Even if the driver accepts blame, wait for the police to arrive to document the accident in the police report.

Make sure your version of accident is part of the Accident Report

Explain your version of the accident. Report all of your injuries, no matter how minor.  Don’t be macho.  It happens where someone gets home with what they thought was a bruise or kink that ended up being a broken bone or torn ligagment.

Even if you don’t get to make a statement, you can contact the officer later with your own written description of the accident.

Get Driver and Witness Contact Info

Try and obtain the name of the car’s driver, as well as his or her address, phone number, driver’s license number, vehicle license number, and insurance information.

Further, get names and contact information for everyone who WITNESSED the accident. If you are injured and cannot get this information yourself, request a bystander to help you get it.

Document What Happened

If you can, make mental notes about the accident: what happened; how it happened; where it occurred; when it occurred; and road, traffic, and weather conditions.  Afterward, make written notes while the memory is still fresh in your mind. I would prefer you do this after consulting with me or another attorney and at the request of the attorney so that it is protected, if need be, by the attorney-client privilege.

Record Your Injuries

Get immediate medical attention for your injuries, even if they are minor. Going to visit a doctor will help corroborate that you were injured, and medical records will document the extent of those injuries. Take photos of your injuries as soon as possible after the accident. Keep a journal of your symptoms and pains every few days. Take photos of your bike and the vehicle that struck you.

Preserve Evidence

Refrain from attempting to fix your bike until you’ve consulted with an attorney. And don’t send your bike, helmet, or any other equipment to anyone other than your attorney—this affects the custody of the evidence. Again, photograph your damaged equipment. Keep your helmet and clothing.

Seek Advice from a Professional

Accidents between bikes and vehicles can involve complex legal issues. Consult a personal injury attorney who understands bicycling or has handled bike accident cases.

Don’t communicate with the insurance companies before consulting an attorney. Anything you say to the insurance company could be used against you later. Sometimes a letter from an attorney to the insurance company will resolve issues while avoiding legal pitfalls.

In certain situations, and especially if contacted in close proximity with the date of the accident, the lawyers at Sanders Law Firm, PLLC can hire an accident reconstruction expert to investigate the bike accident. That expert might obtain skid mark measurements, photograph the scene, speak with additional witnesses, and/or measure and diagram the accident scene.

The attorneys at Sanders Law Firm, PLLC have handled cases ranging from broken humerus requiring a permanent rod to quadraplegia with severe brain damage. If you have a biking accident, call us to discuss at (336)724-4707 or We’ll evaluate your case at no cost to you. We represent bicyclists statewide in North Carolina (NC). If the event happened out of state, we will assist you in finding local counsel out-of-state.

Call Sanders Law Firm, PLLC (336) 724-4707, Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Statewide Representation


Tagged ,

New York City’s Bike Share program “Citi Bike” & History of Transportation Alternative

     First of all, hats off to NYC and their bicycle pioneer work. The summer of 2012 is when NYC rolls out its bike share program called "Citi Bike". It's called that because Citi Bank is sponsoring the program. The program is complete with celebrations, including a choreographed "bike ballet". Unfortunately thousands of the bikes are still in the Brooklyn Navy Yard awaiting more deliveries. The bike group, Transportation Alternatives, wants to roll out the bikes while there is warm weather.

     The New York Times' J. David Goodman wrote on the bike share and the history of Transporation Alternatives, a bicycle advocacy group that has been so influential, it's officers have become officials in the City's transportation department.The article was published on August 12, 2012. Excerpts are used in this internet article.
     Transportation Alternatives has 23 full time employees, 8,000 dues paying members and an email network of 40,000 plus. Their influence has been so strong that their members are in the government and they are part of the official policy of the City. They started 40 years ago in the early 70's. They made their public debut in a "traffic-snarling protest ride" down 5th Avenue in 1973. Within the year, their support grew to include persons such as Edward Koch, then a congressman, later Mayor and governor. When the oil crisis hit, biking grew with a surge. The Koch administration created bike lanes in the 1970's. sadly it was short lived as the 1980s saw a rebound in the City's economy and everyone resorted to driving. In fact, by the late 80's the City moved to ban bicycles from Midtown Manhattan.
     Still, Transportation Alternatives continued to build support, staged protests, blocked traffic, and painted the roads where pedestrians had been killed by cars. Then it grew more in 1991 with some big grants. In the 2000's TA made huge gains when cycling took off again. Mark Gorton, a hedge fund manager made huge donations.
    Then in 2007, Michael Bloombeg appointed TA's own Janette Sadik-Khan as head of NYC's transportation department. Together they have taken on a mandate to remake the streets. The transportation department has an aggressive pro-bike agenda. So far hundreds of new miles of bike lanes have appeared, parking spots eliminated, and some streets were narrowed to slow traffic.
     Some New Yorkers don't care for T.A.'s close relationship with the department, including Neighbors for Better Bike Lanes. NBBL is worried about making the relationship between cars and bikes too antagonistic, thus with repercussions to the cyclists.
     What's next for T.A.? They're pushing for more in-depth investigations of car accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists, want tougher penalties for speeding or negligent drivers, wider bike paths on the Brooklyn Bridge, as well as curbing dangerous cycling.
     If the bike share program is embraced by the City, it may just be the most enduring symbol of Mayor Bloomberg's policies.
     Each city and town across the nation should look to TA's influence and adopt pro-cycling groups for their area. We need more bike lanes. Hats off to NYC for such a bold endeavor. I noticed tons of cyclists in the City when I was there in 2010.
Kirk Sanders
(336) 724-4707
Tagged ,