What Are Common Head Injuries After a Bicycle Accident?

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A tan car is parked next to an overturned bicycle after an accident with head injuries in North Carolina.

Biking accidents can result in severe head and brain injuries that may impair a bicycle accident victim for years to come. In severe head injury cases, bicycle accident victims may wind up permanently disabled. Bike accidents that result in serious head injuries can be especially tragic, as a car driver’s negligence frequently causes them. If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a bike accident, don’t hesitate to contact the experienced bike accident attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters, ‘ by calling us at (800) 529-0804 or contacting us online.

An experienced bicycle accident lawyer can review the facts surrounding your case and then evaluate your claim. Your attorney will do everything possible to build the most robust case possible to ensure that you are made whole and recover the compensation you deserve for your bicycle accident injuries.

What Injuries Can You Sustain From a Bike Accident?

The most common injuries caused by bicycle accidents include:

  • Broken bones: Broken bones and fractures can easily be sustained in a bike accident. The severity will vary from case to case. Cyclists may experience breaks or fractures to the legs, arms, elbows, knees, ankles, spine, or other joints. Spinal fractures can lead to severe impediments. Broken bones may take months to heal properly and will usually require physical therapy and sometimes surgery to heal.
  • Head and neck injuries: TBIs, spinal cord injuries, paralysis, disfiguration, scalp, and facial lacerations, brain swelling, penetrating injuries, skull fractures, and more can occur from a bicycle accident.
  • Limb and joint injuries: broken bones, nerve damage, flesh wounds, and scarring is possible from a bike accident. Bicycle accident injury victims may be left with permanent scarring, or in some cases disfiguration from their accident.
  • Urogenital injuries: injury to the genitals and urinary tract due to impact with the bike may occur in a bicycle accident.

What Percentage of Bicycle Accidents Result in Head Injuries?

According to the National Safety Council:

  • 70-80% of all fatal bicycle accidents involved a head injury
  • ⅓ of non-fatal bicycle accident injuries involved a head injury
  • The number of deaths from bicycle incidents increased 6% in 2019 and 37% in the last 10 years, from 793 in 2010 to 1,089 in 2019.
  • Children cyclists are 5x more likely to be injured than older cyclists
  • The most common cause of injury-related fatalities for children is biking accidents
  • Most accidents occur in urban areas between 6-9 pm in the summer.

How Do Bicycle Helmets Protect the Head in an Accident?

Bicycle helmets are composed of three basic parts: the shell, the inner foam layer, and the straps. The shell is designed to hold the foam in place, the foam is designed to protect your brain and skull from the force of an impact, and the straps are designed to correctly position the helmet and secure it upon your head. Helmets save lives, and they have been shown to reduce the risk of brain injury (TBI) by around 70%. However, a bicycle rider may still experience severe injuries to the head or body while wearing a helmet in an accident with a vehicle.

What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?

A TBI, or traumatic brain injury, can occur when a blunt object strikes an individual’s head or when the head of an individual is subjected to strong impact. TBIs can be penetrative, piercing the skull, or non-penetrative. Traumatic brain injuries vary greatly in severity. While some TBIs can be mild, other TBIs may lead to permanent disability, coma, or death. Some of the most common types of TBIs include the following:


A concussion generally occurs when a strong jolt to the head causes the brain to move rapidly back and forth inside the skull. Concussions can lead to a loss of consciousness and other adverse symptoms.

Brain Contusion

A brain contusion results from a sudden head impact. A brain contusion is a bruise on the brain caused by impact of the brain surface with the inner surface of the skull.

Skull Fracture

Skull fractures occur when a break or crack is present in an individual’s skull, typically resulting from severe trauma to the head.


Hematomas are blood clots that may form in various locations in the brain. Hematomas may be caused by brain trauma, such as from a bicycle accident.

Diffuse axonal injury

A DAI, or diffuse axonal injury, occurs when nerve cells are stretched or severed. A DAI typically occurs when trauma to the head causes the brain to jolt quickly inside an individual’s skull, damaging the brain’s axons in the process. Severe injury to axons can disrupt the brain’s ability to transmit and process information.

Head injuries can lead to short and long-term symptoms. If you or a loved one sustained one or more of these types of TBIs in a bike accident, a knowledgeable bicycle accident lawyer can help you pursue the compensation you deserve for your injury. Bicycle accidents have an enormous potential to cause life-threatening injuries. If you need help after a bicycle accident injury, reach out to our office today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation by calling or contacting us online. Our unique experience in litigating bicycle injury claims can help ensure that your needs and losses are fully covered.

What Are the Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs)?

Mild TBIs

Regarding traumatic brain injuries, ¾  of TBIs are considered mild concussions, making concussions the most frequent type of TBI. Although concussions are considered low-grade TBI, they can still be fatal if left untreated or treated improperly after the accident.

Moderate-to-Severe TBIs

Traumatic brain injuries that are moderate to severe often have longer recovery timelines. They result from injuries like falls, motor vehicle crashes, and assaults.

Open TBIs:

While most TBIs are closed-head injuries resulting from outside impact, open TBIs (also called penetrating TBIs) involve objects penetrating the brain, resulting in damage.

Nontraumatic TBIs:

Nontraumatic TBIs are all TBIs that do not occur due to trauma or impact to the head. A nontraumatic TBI occurs when the brain is damaged due to a lack of oxygen, such as delayed birth injury, near-drowning, seizure, suffocation, strangling, or choking.

No matter the type of traumatic brain injury, lasting symptoms may occur. TBIs can lead to permanent disabilities or brain damage. Accident injury victims with TBIs also are at risk of developing depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder. However, these conditions deserve and can be significantly improved with immediate, steady medical treatment. A personal injury lawsuit may be your best path to ensure that you or your loved one have the compensation to afford the required injury treatments.

Steps To Take After A Bicycle Accident

It is important to note that every action you take following a bike accident may significantly impact your options and rights in the days and months to follow. The following steps are suggested to help you protect yourself legally following a bicycle accident and preserve evidence.

  • Following a bike accident, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention for anyone injured. If necessary, request an ambulance when phoning the police following the accident. If you do not need to be taken in via ambulance, see a medical professional as soon as possible following the accident, even if you feel ok. Some severe injuries may not present with symptoms for hours or days following the accident.
  • Contact the police so that they may arrive at the scene of the accident and take a report. Do not leave the scene of the accident until the police arrive.
  • If possible, take photographs of the accident scene, including the vehicles, your bike, the surrounding area, and any injuries.
  • Obtain the names, addresses, and phone numbers of any witnesses.
  • Take your bike into a bike shop to assess and document the damage done to your bike,
  • Report your accident to your car insurer.
  • Obtain a copy of the police report when available.

North Carolina Bike Accident Lawyer

The experienced attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters’, specialize in car accidents, including bicycle or motorcycle crashes. An experienced attorney will have the know-how to maximize compensation for your pain and suffering, injuries, lost wages, and other expenses. In addition, if you or a loved one were hit by a vehicle while riding your bike, it is essential to know that the other driver’s insurance company may hire an attorney to diminish or deny your claim.

Here at Tatum & Atkinson, the ‘Heavy Hitters’, we accept bicycle accident cases on a contingency fee basis. This means you will never have to pay attorneys fees out of pocket, and we will not get paid unless you win. Contact us today by calling us at (800) 529-0804 or contacting us online  to receive your free case evaluation to see what we can do to help you.

Bicycle Accident Lawyer

No matter the cause of a bicycle accident, serious injuries can be sustained. However, when a bike accident occurs due to another driver’s negligence or an unsafe road, you shouldn’t have to bear the weight of the damages related to your accident alone. Tatum & Atkinson, ‘the Heavy Hitters’ have a proven track record of successful verdicts and settlements helping North Carolina accident victims. If you are in need of legal help after a bicycle accident, reach out to us as soon as possible by calling  (800) 529-0804 or contacting us online. North Carolina has a 3-year deadline for personal injury claims, including claims resulting from a bike accident. The sooner you speak with an experienced bicycle accident lawyer, the better your chances of receiving just compensation to cover medical expenses, lost wages, or funeral expenses in the case of wrongful death. Let our attorneys build the most robust case possible to ensure that you receive the best possible outcome moving forward, allowing you to spend your time and energy moving forward and recovering.