As gas prices continue to rise, many people have turned to bicycling as an alternative and cheaper means of transportation. A lot of people in Westchester County also ride bicycles for sports and recreation.
But every time a bicyclist is on the road, their life is in danger from motorists. Bike riders also endanger their own lives because they disregard rules such as bike helmet safety regulations. Most bicyclists also don’t obey traffic laws observed by other road users.
Image from abc.net
Bicycle accidents are a serious concern, according to statistics.
The statistics below show that cyclists are in great danger:
- A cyclist is involved in a fatal accident every 6 hours.
- Approximately 1 million children are injured yearly in bicycle accidents.
- 49% of those who die from bicycle related injuries are children younger than 16.
- 75% of injuries incurred by cyclists are head injuries.
- Though collisions involving an automobile and a bicycle only make up 1/3 of total accidents, they result in the most injuries.
Safety Tips for Preventing Bike Accidents
First of all, anyone who rides a bicycle must always wear a helmet. Underage riders are especially vulnerable to bicycle accidents; therefore, parents should ensure the safety of their children on the roads by:
- Teaching them Westchester County bike safety
- Teaching them hand signals, for instance, how to signal when making a turn.
Additionally, all riders…
- Should avoid riding after dark. If you must ride when it’s dark.
- Wear reflective clothing or clothing that is easily visible in the dark.
- Make sure your bicycle has head lights and tail lights.
- Use reflective tape on your bicycle to make it easily visible in the dark.
- Not carry items that can easily get tangled in the bicycle chain or spokes.
- Should never ride a bicycle when drunk. Alcohol impairs judgement and limits ability to react quickly to situations.
You should remember that when you are on the road, you have the same rights and obligations as other motorists. Therefore, follow the same traffic laws as other motorists, so that they can treat you as they would any other vehicle. For instance, motorists are trained to keep to the right lane, so keep to the right side of the road so that motorists can see you.
Safety Tips for Vehicle Drivers
All vehicle drivers should follow these rules:
- When turning right at an intersection, give way to bicyclists sharing your lane
- Unless you’re turning off the road, keep off designated bicycle lanes.
- Learn all existing traffic rules meant to keep bicyclists safe; ignorance of the law will land you in trouble.
Common Bicycle Accidents
Most bike accidents are caused by inattentive motorists. A collision involving a cyclist can happen when a motorist:
- Turns right or left in front of a cyclist,
- Pulls into the road in front of a cyclist who’s already in traffic,
- Fails to give way to a motorist at an intersection,
- Ignores a red light or a stop sign,
- Fails to pay attention to cyclists,
- Proceeds without looking both ways after stopping at a red light or stop sign,
- Is driving while drunk or after doing drugs.
As a cyclist, your best defense against potential bicycle accidents is paying attention to your surroundings and taking care to avoid careless and inattentive drivers.
If you, or someone you know, has incurred injuries as a result of a bicycle accident, give us a call at 914-879-4550 or visit our website at www.accidentvictimhelp.com.
This information is in no way legal advice, and does not create the attorney-client relationship. Consult expert legal counsel such as Sean Duffy to go over your case details to fully answer your questions.