We love riding bikes to get fresh air, exercise, and to save money on gas. However, automobile collisions pose a significant threat to bicycle safety. Two percent of all motor vehicle accident deaths each year in the U.S. are bicyclists (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety). Over 900 bicyclists were killed and 494,000 were injured in 2013 alone due to automobile collisions (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).
Bicyclists need to protect themselves by remembering these safety tips from our auto accident attorneys.
- See and Be Seen
“A lot of accidents occur simply because bicyclists are so difficult to see,” says Mike Wyatt, auto accident attorney. “Never ride against the flow of traffic. Keep in the right lane and ride in the same direction as other motor vehicles. Use the bicycle lane if one is available. Wear bright colors or reflective tape whether you’re riding in the daytime, dawn, or dusk. When riding at night, make sure there are reflectors or flashing lights positioned on the front, back, and tires of your bicycle.”
- Wear a Helmet
Bicycle helmets are crucial to saving lives, since head injuries are a leading cause of death in accidents. When you wear a properly fitted helmet, it reduces the chance of a head injury by 50 percent, and a face/neck injury by 33 percent (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety). To increase your safety, it’s also important to make sure bicycle tires are properly inflated and the brakes are working properly.
- Obey Traffic Rules
“Bicycles are classified as vehicles, which means bicyclists have the same responsibilities as other motorists,” explains Scott Mann, auto accident attorney. “In order to increase safety, bicyclists must obey all traffic signals, signs, and lane markings. Come to complete stops at stop signs, and yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians. You also shouldn’t weave in and out of traffic. Ride in a straight line, look before turning, and let other motorists know by signaling left or right.”
Call our auto accident attorneys for a consultation if you were injured in a bicycle/automobile collision. Mann, Wyatt & Tanksley Injury Attorneys is honored to serve your case!