When a cyclist is injured in an incident on the roadways, a bicycle accident lawyer becomes an important part of the unexpected journey. Here in South Carolina, we have Bike Law founder Peter Wilborn who is known for his many contributions as a bike advocate as well as providing support and legal services for injured cyclists. Bike Law had been growing as a regional network of bicycle lawyers since its start in 1998 and has now expanded to a national network with lawyers in 13 states.
When joining the Bike Law network, the lawyers come with the understanding that cause advocacy goes hand-in-hand with representing their clients. It was a natural progression that Bike Law became a top tier sponsor of the Palmetto Cycling Coalition’s state-wide bike advocacy efforts and partnered with us for our safety education campaign – Safe Streets Save Lives.
Peter has found that bicycle lawyers have a unique perspective as their work exists in common ground for different types of cyclists. Whether they ride for recreation or commuting to work, differences fade when their lives have been threatened by an incident with an automobile. Peter struck a chord with cyclists from all over with his post – Lost Art of the Group Ride. He is now actively working to reestablish the mentorship culture that is no longer a part of typical bike groups and new cyclists’ introduction to biking.
Victims can have a paradigm shift if they have not been involved in bike advocacy before their accident. Through the case process they become inspired to contribute to making sure everyone has safe access to the simple pleasure of bike riding – whether for recreation or transportation. One way that victims become involved in advocacy is by donating a portion of their case settlement to bike advocacy. Danny Raines from Aiken stated his intention from the outset of his case that part of his settlement would be donated to the Palmetto Cycling Coalition.
Frank Mansbach had developed passion for Complete Streets efforts, championing the creation of a county policy in his role on the county planning commission. He described his accident as stoking the fire that was already ignited. Frank became increasingly involved in bike advocacy and spearheaded the effort to launch Bike Walk Greenville.
We have a great resource for navigating the shock and impact of an accident on the road, but there’s no need to wait to get involved with making change that will benefit all of us. Get engaged in our statewide advocacy efforts as we make cycling better here in South Carolina – and nationally as part of Bike Law’s culture shift.