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Date Modified: May 24, 2023

Are you seeking a Los Angeles County bicycle accident lawyer after being hurt in a bicycle messenger accident in California? Bicycle delivery in LA’s year-round warm weather can seem like a dream for many. But the injuries to a bike messenger from riding incidents often include broken bones, bike damage, lost wages, or worse.

I am Los Angeles delivery bicycle accident attorney Michael Ehline. Since 2005 the legal team of bike accident lawyers at Ehline Law has vigorously assisted bike messengers and other victims suffering serious injuries to obtain financial compensation in major cities. Below, I will explain the arduous process of bicycle riders getting maximum compensation from a third party, an insurance company, or an employer for a commercial Los Angeles Bicycle accident.

Bicycle messengers, also known as couriers, or commercial delivery cyclists, are individuals who transport goods, packages, documents, or other items using bicycles as their primary mode of transportation. With so many distracted drivers in Southern California, every time a rider peddles risks becoming an injured cyclist due to vehicle driver negligence.

Using a bike lane does not mean the rider will make it home safely. For bicyclists to recover damages for lost future earnings, pain and suffering, out-of-pocket medical treatment, etc., is no easy task. The insurance company won’t roll over and pay just because you suffered injuries. In a civil case, the plaintiff has the burden of proof. If you suffered a brain injury, you may be unable to negotiate your injury claim. So read this Los Angeles bicycle accident lawyer article carefully before you do something to hurt your chances of a full and fair economic recovery.

The Stressful Life of a Delivery Rider

Commercial bike riders often operate in urban areas, navigating through traffic and delivering items quickly and efficiently while avoiding a bike crash in the process. Bicycle couriers are commonly used for time-sensitive deliveries or in congested areas where cars may not be the most efficient or practical means of transportation. Their agility and ability to navigate through traffic and find alternative routes make them well-suited for certain delivery tasks. But sometimes, their routes are turned into a deadly accident scene.

Our law firm aims to explore the studies, shed light on the unique challenges faced by commercial delivery cyclists, and contribute to a better understanding their circumstances as injured cyclists. In this way, we hope we can hold negligent parties liable and make the physical and emotional trauma from delivery bike accidents a thing of the past. In the end, injured riders will be allowed to schedule a free case evaluation from an experienced bike accident attorney. Let’s get into California law, some statistical data, and how to prove negligence in a bicycle messenger crash before obtaining monetary compensation.

Importance of Bike Couriers

Bike couriers are integral to urban life, especially in busy cities like Los Angeles, Sydney, Australia, New York City, and Austin, Texas. Bike couriers play a vital role in streamlining daily activities by efficiently delivering a wide range of items, from business papers and blueprints to fast food. Their ability to maneuver quickly through congested city streets is essential for meeting delivery deadlines and providing timely services in an injury claim.

Common Bicycle Accident Risks for Couriers?

Even after taking the best safety precautions, the nature of a bike courier’s job exposes them to various hazards and risks, often from another driver’s negligence. Accidents are inevitable with traffic congestion, pedestrians, and bicycles sharing the road.

Common causes of bicycle courier accidents could include:

  1. Motor vehicle collisions: Bicycle couriers sharing the road with motor vehicles are vulnerable to collisions caused by a reckless driver or other motorists who may fail to see them, ignore traffic laws (unsafe lane changes, etc.), or violate distracted driving laws.
  2. Dooring incidents: Couriers riding close to parked cars are at risk of “dooring” accidents, where a driver or passenger opens a car door without checking for approaching cyclists, leading to a collision.
  3. Poor road conditions: Potholes, uneven pavement, debris, or other road hazards can cause bicycle couriers to lose control and be involved in accidents.
  4. Unsafe infrastructure: Lack of dedicated bicycle lanes, inadequate signage, or poorly designed intersections can increase the risk of accidents for bicycle couriers. To prove negligence against a govt entity means hiring a superior bicycle courier accident lawyer.
  5. Reckless riding: In some cases, accidents involving bicycle couriers may occur due to their own reckless riding behaviors, such as running red lights, riding against traffic, or engaging in aggressive maneuvers.
  6. Pedestrian collisions: Bicycle couriers navigating crowded areas may collide with pedestrians if they are not given enough space or fail to yield the right of way.
  7. Weather conditions: Adverse weather conditions like rain, snow, or strong winds can affect visibility, traction, and control, increasing the risk of accidents.

City blocks are becoming increasingly crowded, making it challenging to navigate safely. Unfortunately, accidents involving bike couriers can occur due to factors such as running red lights or riding on sidewalks in an attempt to meet delivery expectations.

Bicycle Accidents and Courier Statistics

We could not find Los Angeles bicycle delivery people’s accident statistics from local city, county, or insurance company data online. So we culled what we could worldwide, starting with NY to get an idea of the number of couriers getting hurt in LA.


New York Bicycle Accidents

According to the Biking Public Project, a rider advocacy group, in 2017, a staggering 62% of surveyed working delivery cyclists disclosed their involvement in at least one motor vehicle collision during their employment. Moreover, on average, 30% of respondents admitted to missing work due to job-related injuries within the past year.

To put these figures into perspective, the New York State Department of Labor reported that in 2017, only 1.5 out of 100 full-time workers missed work due to work-related injuries in New York. On a national scale, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics calculated that merely 0.9 per hundred full-time workers had missed work due to bike accident injuries in the same year. These contrasting statistics emphasize the heightened vulnerability working cyclists face in their profession.

Reasons given for so much missed work and bike crashes were:

  • Numerous hours of biking on hazardous streets that are not designed to accommodate cyclists.
  • Poor working conditions
  • Low wages
  • Excessively long shifts
  • Pressure to work faster
  • Lack of worker’s compensation.

Riders in NY ride up to 12 or even 16 hours daily. This significantly increases the likelihood of bike accidents, regardless of their experience level. With the growing demand for swift deliveries, the job of working cyclists becomes even more challenging and perilous.



A recent study conducted in Australia has revealed that bicycle injuries among gig economy workers in New South Wales (NSW) are more prevalent than what official state reports indicate. Researchers from Macquarie University conducted the study by examining medical records from the emergency department of St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney. The aim was to investigate the number of bicycle accident-related injuries suffered by both commercial and non-commercial cyclists.

The analysis encompassed 386 hospital records documenting bike-related injuries sustained by riders between the period of 2019 and 2020. Dr. Mitchell Sarkies, one of the researchers, explained in an article published in The Lighthouse that out of these records, the work status of 46% (172 documents) couldn’t be confirmed. However, among the remaining records, they identified 43 cases (12%) involving commercial delivery cyclists and 153 cases (42%) involving non-commercial cyclists.

The number of recorded bike-accident injuries among delivery riders contrasts with the figures reported by SafeWork NSW, the state’s Work Health and Safety (WHS) regulator. SafeWork NSW reported only 37 bicycle accident-related injuries associated with commercial delivery during the same period of 2019-2020.

It is important to note that the researchers’ data was derived from a single hospital, whereas SafeWork NSW’s data covers the entirety of the state. This discrepancy in data sources should be considered when considering the reported numbers of injuries among gig economy cyclists in NSW. We would imagine the statistics are similar in a Downtown Los Angeles bicycle accident.

Worker’s Compensation Coverage

In the event of an accident, bike couriers may be covered by their employer’s worker’s compensation policy while performing their job. However, it is worth noting that some couriers are considered independent contractors, which may limit their access to worker’s compensation benefits. In such a bicycle accident case, seeking compensation from the at-fault driver’s vehicle insurance policy or the courier’s automobile insurance coverage may be necessary.

Importance of an Expert Bicycle Accident Lawyer

Bicycle courier accident cases can be complex, and having an experienced attorney by your side is crucial. Filing a personal injury lawsuit for a bicycle accident can be daunting, as insurance companies may try to minimize compensation. At Ehline Law Firm, we understand bicycle accident victims’ unique challenges and strive to provide dedicated legal representation as bicycle accident attorneys.

Avoiding Bike Courier Accidents

Bike couriers can take steps to reduce the risk of accidents. Maintaining visibility on the streets by using reflectors, wearing bright or reflective clothing, and using hand signals when turning can enhance safety. Following appropriate bike laws and utilizing bike lanes whenever possible is also important. Takes steps to exercise caution when approaching intersections to avoid potential bicycle accident collisions.

Collecting Information at the Scene

In the unfortunate event of a bicycle accident, collecting as much information as possible from the scene is crucial. Taking photographs of the incident, including the positioning of the bikes and any damages, can provide valuable evidence. Additionally, seeking prompt medical attention is essential, even for seemingly minor injuries, as some conditions like traumatic brain injury or concussion may go unnoticed and require medical care.

Common Injuries and Medical Care

Bicycle couriers can sustain severe injuries in accidents, such as fractures, concussions, head trauma, and soft tissue injuries. Expert medical care is often required, leading to significant medical expenses. Many couriers may also need time away from work to heal, resulting in financial challenges due to a loss of income.

The Complexity of Bicycle Messenger Cases

Handling bicycle messenger accident cases requires thoroughly analyzing various laws and regulations. Having a qualified bike courier injury lawyer on your side is crucial for navigating the complexities of such claims. The team at Ehline Law Firm has extensive experience in handling bicycle courier cases and is well-versed in the specific laws that apply to these situations.

Who Is Liable for Bike Delivery Accidents?

Determining liability for bike delivery accidents can vary depending on the specific circumstances and applicable laws.

In general, multiple parties may potentially be held liable, including:

  1. Delivery rider: The rider may be held responsible if their own negligence or actions contributed to the accident. For example, if the rider was speeding, running red lights, or engaging in reckless behavior.
  2. Motorists: If a motorist’s negligence, such as distracted driving, failure to yield, or violating traffic laws, causes an accident with a delivery cyclist, they may be held liable for the resulting injuries or damages.
  3. Employers or delivery platforms: In some cases, the employer or delivery platform may be held liable for the actions of their delivery riders. This can occur if they fail to train or protect the riders properly, force them to work in unsafe conditions, or encourage unsafe behavior.
  4. Government entities: Poor road design, inadequate signage, or other unsafe conditions caused by government entities may contribute to bike delivery accidents. In such cases, the government entity responsible for road maintenance may be held liable.
  5. Manufacturers or maintenance providers: If a bike or its components were defective, leading to an accident, the manufacturer or maintenance provider may be liable for the resulting injuries.

Many factors are at play to see if you get paid and how much, including evidence of the following:

  • What pictures or video show (skid marks, road debris, potholes, etc.)
  • Conduct of the parties (was anyone acting aggressively?)
  • What does the police report investigation say?
  • What witnesses or local residents say
  • Speed of vehicles and riders
  • Paying attention or careless
  • Dangerous lane changes
  • Were children struck?
  • Alcohol use or drugs
  • Cost of treatment
  • Cost of repair
  • Helmet use
  • Blind spots.

It’s essential for clients to consult with a legal professional specializing in personal injury or bicycle accident cases to understand your jurisdiction’s specific laws and regulations and determine liability in a bike delivery accident. What you earn is directly related to the evidence, skill level, personality, and fight of your legal counsel.

Seeking Fair Compensation With Help From a Bicycle Courier Accident Lawyer

Ready to end your nightmare and go after the person behind the wheel or other defendants who caused your bike messenger injury? At Ehline Law, they are committed to seeking fair compensation for commercial bicycle accident victims. Their bike delivery injury attorneys understand the devastating impact of bicycle accidents and work diligently to hold negligent drivers accountable.

Our best bicycle courier accident attorneys advocate for their client’s rights. Our goal is to ensure that medical bills are paid and fair compensation is obtained for pain and suffering and any lost work over your life. We can also seek the highest payments for nursing care in homes and other related assistance in crippling delivery bicycle accidents. Call us for a free consultation at (213) 596-9642. Letting an attorney focus on your recovery is in your best interests.


Title: “Pedestrian and Bicyclist Safety” Website: U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration URL:

Author(s): Not available Title: “Commercial and non-commercial cycling injuries: pilot findings from routine hospital medical records” Source: PMC (PubMed Central) Year: Not available URL:

Author(s): Not available Title: “Delivery Riders Are Getting Injured at Alarming Rates” Source: Bicycle Network Date: June 15, 2022 URL:

Title: “Feasibility and pilot study to examine the classification of bicycle-related injuries in emergency medical records: a mixed-methods study” Journal: Pilot and Feasibility Studies Year: 2022 Volume: 8 Issue: 1 Article Number: 162 URL:

Michael Ehline is an inactive U.S. Marine and world-famous legal historian. Michael helped draft the Cruise Ship Safety Act and has won some of U.S. history’s largest motorcycle accident settlements. Together with his legal team, Michael and the Ehline Law Firm collect damages on behalf of clients.
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Michael Ehline

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