Riding a bike is a great way to get exercise, reduce fossil fuel usage, and reduce congestion on California roads. That said, riding a bike can be dangerous. At The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker we are here to help the victims of bike accidents and their families. However, we would prefer to help prevent these accidents in the first place. If you have already been in an accident, call us at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation. If you have not been in an accident, keep reading to learn about steps you can take to reduce your risk.
There is One Step Everyone on the Road Should Take
While bike riders must take steps to stay safe on the roads, drivers must do the same. In fact, if everyone on the road – including bike riders, pedestrians, motorists, etc., – understood the laws and followed them, there would be far fewer accidents. It is up to everyone to make sure they are doing one simple thing: Sharing the road appropriately.
A person riding a bike down the street must follow the same laws and rules of the road as a motorist. That said, they also deserve the same rights and respect that anyone else on the road would get. All drivers are required by law to give three feet of clearance to a bike rider if they are passing them. As is true of any driver, a person riding their bike down the road must avoid distractions that could increase their chances of being involved in an accident.
Facts About Bike Accidents
To fully understand the importance of taking every step possible to stay safe, it is important to first understand how serious the issue is. Consider in just the last five years, in just the state of California, more than 770 bike riders lost their lives in accidents. That doesn’t include the more than 59,000 cyclists who were injured in the same period of time. In just 2016 alone, there were upwards of 835 cyclists killed in accidents throughout the country.
In fact, cyclist deaths made up more than 2% of all traffic fatalities in 2016. 71% of those who died that year were killed in urban areas. In 2007, the average age of victims of fatal bike accidents was 40. By 2016 it had increased in 46. This is important for older riders to know, as they are often under the impression that younger riders are in more danger.
California Highway Patrol Officers Took Steps to Protect Cyclists
During the month, CHP officers did what are known as safety rodeos, which include education presentations that are designed to help keep riders safe and teach motorists how to promote safety form their perspective. CHP officers reminded bike riders to be courteous to others on the road and reminded motorists that they should always be on the lookout for bike riders.