Articles Tagged with bicycle accident

California Bicycle Safety

California Bicycle Safety and the “Three Foot Law”

California in general and Davis in particular have been at the cutting-edge of bicycle safety for decades. In fact, some of the bicyclist-friendly infrastructure now commonplace in many cities was introduced in Davis nearly 50 years ago. These infrastructure improvements were adopted primarily to make city streets more accessible and safer for bicyclists. Last year, California once again demonstrated its commitment to bicyclist safety by recently enacting the “Three-Foot-Law,” commonly referred to as “Give Me Three.”


A man who fled Afghanistan to escape the violence of the Taliban was killed ten days after coming to this country. While riding their bikes outside on their bikes, Mustafa Rafi and his 8-year-old son struck by a motorist who was distracted by looking down at a text message on his cell phone. The accident occurred just before 10:00 am Saturday Morning.

By the late 1980s, states in the U.S. began adopting a variety of bicycle helmet laws to improve safety and reduce serious injuries. Studies have found that helmets can reduce reduce the occurrence of head injuries by about half and the frequency of neck or facial injuries by about one third. These studies are not without controversy, however, as other studies and anecdotal data indicate there may be much less protection from helmets. Currently, more than 20 states have some form of a statewide bicycle helmet law and hundreds of cities have individually adopted similar requirements. Only about a dozen states have neither statewide nor local bicycle helmet laws.bicycle helmet laws

Since 1999, standards for helmets in the United States have been mandated by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The primary protection offered by this type of helmet is a reduction in impact acceleration to the head from an inner liner of polystyrene that absorbs energy as it crushes, similar to how a car’s structure is designed to absorb energy by crushing so as to protect its occupants. In order to offer this crush protection, however, it is crucial that bicycle helmets be in good condition (no prior impacts) and properly fitted to each individual rider’s head. Unfortunately, this often doesn’t happen — one study published in 2003 found that although nearly three-quarters of the studied children reported wearing helmets when bicycling, more than 90% of children had helmets with either condition and/or fit problems. When the fit of the helmet had been selected by the parent alone without any expert input, none were found by the study to fit properly. Expert assistance is key.

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