What Do You Do If You Are in an Accident on a Rented Bike?
Bikeshare and rental bike programs are increasingly becoming popular in various U.S. cities, and the city of Sarasota is no exception. Available through the app by Veo Ride, Sarasota locals and visitors can now ditch the traffic and long commutes through Veo’s bikesharing and e-scooter sharing rental program.
At the end of the program’s initial rollout, Veo is looking to offer up to 75 bicycles and up to 400 scooters for rent in various areas throughout the city. The rental bikes have medal-assisted and traditional versions, and the scooters feature standup and seated options. Renting a bike or scooter is easy. You just need to download the app, fill up some information, and choose a payment option to get started.
But what are the potential legal implications if you get into an accident while riding a rental bicycle?
Rental Bikes and The Law
How the law treats rental bike accidents significantly depends on the specific nature of the bike accident. For example, if you were riding a rental bike and were struck by a vehicle due to the driver’s negligence, the accident will be treated as a typical traffic accident.
You must prove that the negligent driver is liable for your injuries and other losses related to the accident to successfully recover compensation for your damages. You will probably need a Sarasota bicycle accident attorney if you’re severely injured and have missed a lot of days at work to ensure that you receive fair compensation.
But if you were injured in an accident due to a defect in the rental bike, things can get complicated fast. Ideally, if the rental bike was poorly maintained, previously damaged, or had a manufacturing or design defect, you may be able to bring a claim for compensation against the bike manufacturer or the rental company.
Unfortunately, it’s common for rental companies to limit their liability for accidents by including language in rental contracts stating that people who rent their bikes waive their right to sue or must agree to arbitration. They also commonly include onerous or vague rental terms and conditions that would enable them to claim breach of contract in the event of an accident.
And in the case of Veo, who’s contracted by the city of Sarasota, people who rent their bikes and scooters automatically assume responsibility, in advance, for the use of their equipment.
Consult with an Experienced Sarasota Bike Accident Attorney Now
Because rental bike accidents can be complex, after seeking proper and prompt medical attention for your injuries, you must contact a Sarasota bike accident attorney right away before talking to insurance claims adjusters. Your attorney can review the rental agreement, investigate the accident to determine fault, and figure out who must be held liable for your losses.
To set up a free review of your case with the skilled Sarasota bike accident attorney of Matthews Injury Law, please call our office at 941-877-5800 or send us an online message.