Common Bike Accidents – Santa Barbara


Common Bike Accidents – Santa Barbara

Hello, I’m Ed Smith, a Santa Barbara Personal Injury Lawyer. May is bike month here in Santa Barbara and it is a wonderful time to kick the winter dust of the two wheels and use it for commuting to work, the store, or even ride around the block.  With this month’s emphasis on getting out and biking, it is important to remind ourselves of the dangerous situations that present themselves on the road to avoid common bike accidents and their injuries.

Most Common Bike Accidents:

The Parallel Door Surprise

This occurs as you are passing parked cars on the side of the street. Suddenly, an ignorant driver opens their door right in front of you. After impact, the best scenario is walking away with a mouthful of leather interior. Luckily this crash can be easily avoided. Watch for cars that recently parked on the side of the road. If you notice the silhouette of any person in a vehicle, cautiously slow down and increase the space between you and the car.

The Rolling Right

Many vehicles yield to oncoming traffic when making a right turn. This situation becomes dangerous as turning drivers fail to notice the bicyclist. You are riding pleasantly along with the right of way when you feel the entire Chargers defensive line slam into you broadside. To avoid such an unfortunate situation, slow down and try to make eye contact with the driver. If they don’t notice you, give a little wave to draw their attention. If you deem it safe, ride further left to give yourself a little space between you and any potential bicycle accident.

Wrong-way Blunder

Most common bike accidents can best be avoided by following the rules of the road. The correct side of the road on which to ride your bicycle is with the flow of traffic. In case you are British, that will be on the right side of the street here in the United States. The Wrong-way Blunder happens when you ride against the flow of traffic. Similar to the rolling right, a vehicle approaches the road from a side street and yields to turn right. If you are on the wrong side of the road, the driver is not likely to look to the right to make sure the way is clear. In case there are any doubts, as the bicyclist, you will lose in this situation. The way to avoid this is by not riding against the flow of traffic.

The Ol’ Left Cross

While crossing an intersection on a green light, oncoming traffic may be yielding to turn left. The danger happens when the yielding left turner fails to notice you crossing the intersection and steps on the gas to make it through before the next car. The result would make Mike Tyson’s approaching fist, a welcome sight. As in all the previous situations, the car is bigger than you and ultimately you will lose. Avoiding this collision is possible if you maintain awareness. Don’t ride on the sidewalk as it may not register with the turning car that you are crossing the intersection when they are focusing on oncoming cars. Also, do not pass slower traffic on the right as it may hide you from the view of the turning cars.

The Ol’ Right Hook

It is important to be aware of your surroundings to avoid bike accidents. While crossing an intersection, cars that are waiting to turn right will have a hard time seeing you if you pass on the right. Most likely when it is clear for you to go, it will be clear for them and before you know it, you’ll be underneath their car. If you need further reason, tire tread marks all over your body have yet to be seen as a great fashion statement.

Riding safely and avoiding common bike accidents starts with making yourself more visible to other people on the road. To increase visibility were bright clothing, preferably with reflectors, and always use a light when riding while it is dark.

All kinds of injuries can occur while riding a bicycle don’t hesitate to visit these related articles to find answers to questions such as “what is a sprain?”, “what is a femur fracture?” and more.

Santa Barbara Personal Injury Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Santa Barbara Personal Injury Lawyer. If you, or any member of your family, have suffered a bicycle accident or suffered any injury or a wrongful death due to another’s negligence. Please don’t hesitate to immediately call me locally at (805) 372-0200 for a free consultation. You can call me free of charge at (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advise.

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Image source: By Photopippo – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

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