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Denver Bicycling Accidents on the Rise

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June 3, 2024 Bicycle Accidents

Colorado’s vast, varied, and rugged landscape promotes an active lifestyle, making outdoor activities like cycling a popular pursuit for residents and visitors.

However, the growing popularity of cycling in and around Denver has also led to a troubling rise in bicycle accidents.

Recent statistics paint an alarming picture. Bicycle accidents in Denver have reached an unprecedented level that local authorities call a “public health crisis.”

Whether commuting to work, exercising, or exploring the city’s scenic routes, cyclists face several hazards, especially in heavy-traffic areas of Denver and surrounding areas.

Most statistics indicate only the number of fatal bicycling accidents that occur on Denver’s streets, but for every deadly accident, dozens more people suffer serious injuries. When a heavy vehicle collides with a bicyclist’s unprotected body, catastrophic injuries often result.

At Fuicelli & Lee, our Denver bicycling accident lawyers have worked with several individuals and families grappling with the devastating physical, emotional, and financial trauma of bicycle accidents.

After a biking accident, call Fuicelli & Lee immediately. We understand the hardships you face, and we fight to get full, fair, and complete compensation for every one of our clients.

Schedule a Free Consultation Today!

How Many Bicycle Accidents Occur in Denver?

Over the past several years, the number of bicycle accidents statewide has fluctuated, with periods of decline followed by sharp increases. For instance, fatal bicycle accidents dropped sharply in 2018 and leveled out from 2019 to 2022 before shooting upward again.

These alternate rises and drops have been the pattern since at least 2002, but a look at the overall trend is one of steady and concerning growth. Bicycle accidents in Denver have followed this pattern.

While declines in bicycle accidents are always a great thing, they shouldn’t be hailed as victories when accidents in subsequent years resurge to a new plateau.

Efforts to improve bicycle safety are successful only when they sustain steady annual declines in proportion to the growth in population and traffic. About 2% of all traffic accidents in Denver in recent years involved bicycles – about 265 bicycle crashes annually.

At Fuicelli & Lee, we keep an eye on bicycle accident trends and understand the gravity of the situation.

Despite city efforts to improve safety for bicyclists and pedestrians alike, accidents resulting in deaths and catastrophic injuries have been persistently stubborn.

What Causes Bicycle Accidents in Denver?

While cycling comes with some inherent risks, motorists who fail to operate their vehicles responsibly and follow the rules of the road present the greatest threat to bicyclists.

An Asian mountain biker was injured in a collision with a car on the road.

Both bicycles and motor vehicles must obey the same traffic laws and regulations. Many bicycle accidents occur when motorists neglect to treat cyclists as equals on the road.

Some of the most common causes of bicycle accidents in Denver are:

  • The left-hand turn: Drivers who fail to properly check for oncoming cyclists before making a left turn across traffic put bicyclists at risk of colliding with their vehicle.
  • The right hook: Drivers who pass a cyclist and then make an abrupt right turn in front of the cyclist’s path, cutting them off.
  • Distracted driving: Drivers who text, use a phone, eat, or engage in other distracting behaviors fail to devote their full attention to the road and surroundings and put cyclists at risk of crashing.
  • Failure to properly yield at intersections: Drivers who neglect to yield the right-of-way to cyclists at intersections, stop signs, or when entering roadways.
  • Passing cyclists too closely: Not giving cyclists enough clearance when passing or failing to provide them adequate space on the road could force them off the road or into other vehicles.
  • Dooring: When a driver or passenger opens their car door into the path of an approaching cyclist, it can cause the cyclist to collide with the door.
  • Drunk driving and driving under the effects of drugs: Impaired motorists with reduced reaction times, impaired judgment, and lack of control over their vehicle.
  • Road rage: Aggressive driving behavior where motorists intentionally harass, intimidate, or endanger cyclists out of anger or hostility.

Where Do Most Bicycle Accidents Occur?

About 75% of most bicycle accidents occur in urban areas where traffic is dense.

The Denver bicycle accident lawyers at Fuicelli & Lee have handled numerous cases involving bike accidents at high-risk locations, such as:

  • Intersections: With multiple vehicles crossing paths and turning, intersections increase collision potential if drivers fail to properly yield or misjudge cyclist speed and distance.
  • Arterial roads: Major thoroughfares around shopping centers, with higher speed limits, broad multi-lane crossing sections, several parking lot entries, and heavier traffic volumes, are some of the most dangerous roads for cyclists. Arterial roads are like highways with crosswalks.
  • Urban areas with heavy traffic and congestion: Narrow streets, obstructed views, alleys, and pedestrian activity create chaotic environments where cyclists often get overlooked.
  • Construction zones: Changing traffic patterns, detours, and construction vehicles/equipment can cause confusion and heighten accident risks.
  • Roads without dedicated bike lanes or cycling infrastructure: Forcing cyclists to share the road with vehicles increases the likelihood of collisions.
  • Poorly lit or poorly maintained roads: Obscured visibility and hazardous conditions, especially at night or in inclement weather.

Where Are Denver’s Bicycle Crash Hot Spots?

Car crashes with bicycle on road.

Denver, like most other cities, has specific areas that are more conducive to accidents, whether those collisions are between two motor vehicles, an automobile and a pedestrian, or an automobile and a bicycle.

According to the Colorado Department of Transportation, the streets and intersections in and around Denver where more bike accidents occur are:

Central Denver:

  • Colfax Avenue and Broadway intersection
  • 12th Street
  • 16th Street Mall and Tremont Place intersection
  • Speer Boulevard
  • Lincoln St.

Northwest Denver:

  • Federal Boulevard
  • Intersection of Federal Boulevard and Alameda Avenue

East Denver:

  • Colorado Boulevard
  • Intersection of Colorado Boulevard and Colfax Avenue
  • Intersection of Quebec Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard

Southwest Denver:

  • Santa Fe Drive
  • Intersection of Santa Fe Drive and 6th Avenue


  • Havana Street
  • Intersection of Havana St and Alameda Ave
  • Colfax Avenue stretch through Aurora


  • Intersection of U.S. 6 and Wadsworth Boulevard
  • Union Boulevard


  • Federal Boulevard corridor


  • Broadway Street
  • Santa Fe Drive


  • Wadsworth Bypass

Bicyclists Are Prone to Catastrophic Injuries

Bicycle accidents often result in devastating injuries due to the vulnerability of cyclists when colliding with much larger and heavier vehicles.

Unlike the occupants of cars or trucks who have the protective shell of the vehicle’s frame and safety features like airbags, cyclists are essentially unprotected and exposed in a collision.

Cropped shot of a female cyclist suffering from ankle pain after a car accident on the road. Concept of a car crash involving a bicycle on the road.

Even when wearing a helmet, a bicyclist’s body bears the full brunt of the impact forces in a motor vehicle crash. This stark difference in size and weight almost always favors the vehicle, leaving the cyclist susceptible to catastrophic or even life-threatening injuries.

One of the reasons why more bicyclists are being killed and injured in Denver may be due to the ever-growing popularity of larger and heavier vehicles. The heavier the motor vehicle is, the longer it takes to stop.


Higher hoods and front ends on SUVs, pickup trucks, and some cars tend to hit cyclists in the chest during a collision instead of on the legs. The most-registered vehicles in Colorado are the Ford F-150 and the Chevy Silverado. In 1990, there were more Honda Accords on the road than massive pickups. Collisions between cyclists and even larger vehicles, such as tractor-trailers and buses, usually result in the bicyclist’s death.

At Fuicelli & Lee, we see all too often the catastrophic toll bicycle accidents take on cyclists and their families, including:

  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI) are some of the most severe and potentially life-altering consequences of bicycle accidents. While helmets provide some protection, the violent forces of a bike crash can still cause injuries ranging from concussions to major head trauma, such as skull fractures and permanent cognitive impairment.
  • Spinal cord injuries occur when the body is violently twisted or impacted, resulting in partial or complete paralysis if the spinal cord is severed or compressed. These devastating injuries can leave victims permanently dependent on a wheelchair and facing lifelong limitations of mobility and independence.
  • Broken bones and fractures are extremely common, affecting arms, legs, ribs, and other body parts exposed during the collision. These injuries are excruciating and can require multiple surgeries to insert pins, plates, or rods to repair the breaks. Permanent disability and disfigurement are also potential consequences.
  • Internal bleeding and organ damage can happen when the body experiences severe blunt force trauma from the impact. Lacerated spleens, punctured lungs, and other internal injuries may require emergency surgery and pose life-threatening risks.
  • Road rash results when the skin comes into harsh contact with the pavement, causing excruciating friction burns and permanent scarring. These gravel rash injuries can cover large areas of the body and lead to infections due to the dirt and debris that enter the wound.

The injuries sustained in bicycle accidents involving motor vehicles are often severe and life-changing. Victims may face long-term disability, inability to work, or maintain their previous quality of life.

The consequences extend far beyond just physical, taking an emotional and financial toll as well.

Claiming Damages After a Denver Bicycle Accident

A hand with a pen pointing to the word "Damages" on the paper.

When a motorist’s negligence causes a bicycle accident, the survivor or the family of a deceased victim can seek compensation for damages and losses.

Usually, the best way to get full and fair compensation is to consult with a bicycle accident lawyer who will take on that fight for you with skill, conviction, and a strong determination to win, including filing a personal injury lawsuit if necessary.

Fuicelli & Lee advocates tirelessly for bicycle accident victims. Our team of attorneys understands the hardships you face, and we are ready to build a strong case for you. A major part of this process is determining how much compensation you will need to recover and put your life back together.

We work with you to determine every dollar of compensation to adequately cover your past, present, and future suffering and losses.

Damages you can seek generally fall into two categories:

Economic Damages:

  • Medical expenses: past and future costs for emergency treatment, hospitalization, surgeries, rehabilitation, medications, etc.
  • Lost wages: income not earned due to inability to work during recovery
  • Loss of earning capacity: if injuries cause permanent disability impacting future employment/earnings
  • Property damage: repair or replacement of damaged bicycle, gear, etc.
  • Other: out-of-pocket costs, such as home modifications, transportation costs, and other incidental expenses related to the accident

Non-Economic Damages:

  • Pain and suffering: payment for physical pain and emotional trauma caused by the accident/injuries
  • Disfigurement: damages for permanent scarring or bodily disfigurement
  • Disability/impairment: damages for loss of normal life functions/activities due to disabilities
  • Diminished quality of life: the loss of enjoyment of previous lifestyle and activities
  • Loss of consortium: loss of companionship/intimacy suffered by spouse
  • Emotional distress: psychological injuries like anxiety, depression, PTSD

In the tragic event of a fatal bicycle accident, grieving families can pursue wrongful death damages to cover burial expenses, lost income and support their loved one would have provided, not to mention the immense and inconsolable loss of love and companionship.

How Will Fuicelli & Lee’s Bicycle Accident Attorneys Help Me?

Business professionals and lawyers discussing contract papers with a brass scale on the desk in an office. Law, legal services, advice, justice, and law concept picture with film grain effect.

Fuicelli & Lee Injury Lawyers advocates tirelessly for bicycle accident victims. Our personal injury team understands the challenges you face after an accident, from physical recovery to mounting medical bills and lost wages. We fight for you and ensure you receive the most compensation possible.

Several of our lawyers are former prosecutors armed with experience and perspective that greatly benefit our clients.

Having lawyers who previously worked as prosecutors gives Fuicelli & Lee invaluable expertise in the courtroom. We understand defense strategies, evidence-gathering techniques, and how to build airtight cases that get results.

We also believe accountability is key to justice. Holding negligent parties accountable for the injuries they’ve caused helps send a message to other would-be offenders and makes them think twice before putting cyclists’ lives in peril.

And with bicycle accidents on the rise in Denver, that’s a powerful impact you and your case can have on the lives of others.

Don’t go it alone or negotiate with insurance companies, hoping to get a fair settlement. Fuicelli & Lee will fight to get you the compensation you need and deserve, and we won’t back down until we do.

If you haven’t yet called and spoken with a member of our team, call us today at (303) 444-4444 and let us put our experience, strength, and conviction to work for you.

For Other Colorado Injury Lawyers

If you are a Colorado attorney with a strong but difficult case and would like us to help, reach out to us. We have extensive experience and a solid record of success handling even the most complex and challenging personal injury claims.

We know that some cases present unique obstacles, whether proving liability, overcoming allegations of comparative negligence, or dealing with well-funded insurance companies determined to minimize payouts.

Fuicelli & Lee’s dedicated Denver personal injury attorneys provide expert legal support, securing full compensation for your losses.

In all these areas and more, we can make a pivotal difference in the success of your case and the life of your client. Call us at (303) 444-4444 to discuss working as co-counsel together.

Schedule a Free Consultation Today!