Biking On Busy Roads Made Easy
I’m Ed Smith, a Pittsburg bicycle accident lawyer. Biking is a common hobby and method of transportation for those who reside in California. However, recent studies have revealed that California is indeed one of the worst states in regards to bicycle safety. Just from the years 2010 to 2012, California’s rate of bicyclist-related traffic fatalities rose from 23 to 123, accounting for nearly a 500 percent increase. This data can bring little comfort to bicyclists, especially those who ride in areas with busy streets. To learn how to ride your bicycle safely along congested roads, please read our informative article below.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
Bicycle accidents can cause serious injury or even death to those affected. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that 726 cyclists suffered fatal injuries in motor vehicle crashes in 2014 alone. Motorists and cyclists are both required by state law to exercise due care to prevent collisions. Even when a bicyclist is obeying the rules of the road, accidents happen and can result in life-changing consequences.
Bicycle Safety Tips
Whether you are bicycling on a day-to-day basis or take your bike out for special occasions, it is important to exercise due care during your ride. Here is a list of tips that will help you feel comfortable while bicycling during congested traffic conditions:
- Bicycles have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicles: On the road, it is legally expected that bicyclists follow the same laws as the cars around them. There is no such thing as special treatment, so make sure you are stopping at every red light and always making full stops at signs.
- Get comfortable with staying to the right of lanes: The typical rule of thumb is to stay on the right-hand side of your lane, but there is some fluidity with this rule. You are welcome to ride in the middle if you feel that it is necessary for your safety. It is undoubtedly within your rights to make that decision.
- Remember that three is the golden number: Always maintain a distance of at least three feet from parked vehicles. If you stay less than three feet away, you run the risk of biking straight into a car door that has been flung open onto your path. These “dooring” incidents can lead to severe and sometimes fatal injuries.
- Make sure you are clearly visible during nighttime: As a nighttime rider, you want to stand out as much as possible to warn all the oncoming cars. This means buying reflective clothing or reflective duck tape that you can apply to your clothing. Additionally, white headlights and red taillights are also an option to make your bike more visible.
- Do not neglect your bell: While they are often ignored, your bicycle bell is crucial to signal your presence. In times of heavy traffic, motorists are often concerned with getting in faster lanes and they may fail to see a cyclist on the road. This is where your bell can save the day!
- Learn the proper hand signals for turns: We can’t verbalize our intentions to everyone else on the road, but we can use hand gestures to alert motorists of our next move. Left turns can be signaled by sticking your left arm out straight. Right turns are signaled by making an “L” shape with your arm. To indicate coming to a stop, turn your “L” upside down.
Related Content by Pittsburg Bicycle Accident Lawyer, Ed Smith:
- Cases Involving Serious Injuries
- Do I Have a Time Limit in Which to Bring a Claim?
- Personal Injury Damages – What You’re Able to Recover
Pittsburg Bicycle Accident Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Pittsburg bicycle accident lawyer. Bicycle accidents can be just as serious as any other motor vehicle accident, and they can potentially result in serious injuries. When this occurs, finding a well-experienced bicycle injury lawyer can seriously help your situation. Please call me at (925) 428-5220 or (800) 404-5400 for friendly, free advice.
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For more details on car accidents and personal injuries, please visit my website: AutoAccident.com
Photo Attribution: Author Fancycrave – Pexels.
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