Top Ways a Bicyclist Can Stay Safe in Citrus Heights
I’m Ed Smith, a Citrus Heights personal injury lawyer. Many people would be surprised that 2.2 percent of all traffic fatalities in motor vehicle accidents involve bicycle riders. With more people taking up bicycle riding for pleasure and exercise, as well as a way to get to work and run errands, it is important that riders learn what to do to stay safe. Following are safety tips that can help.
Should You Wear a Helmet?
In California, everyone under the age of 18 is required to wear a safety helmet when riding a bicycle, skateboard, scooter, inline skates or in a carrier that is being towed by a bike. Helmets must meet the legal standard under California Vehicle Code 21212, which states that they must be approved by the U.S. Product Safety Commission or the American Society for Testing and Materials. Even though it is not legally required, adults can also be protected by wearing a helmet since an accident can cause traumatic brain injury.
Learning to Ride Defensively
Just as a motorist must drive a vehicle defensively to watch for danger, a bicycle rider must also be alert in order to help avoid a collision. Being focused on riding and traffic at all times can help you spot potential problems such as a vehicle that might turn in front of you.
Just as a motorist should, a bicyclist should also obey all traffic laws that pertain to bicycle riders.
- Do not talk or text on a cell phone or listen to music while riding. This is not only distracting but may prevent you from hearing the surrounding traffic.
- Use designated bike paths where available. Remember that although passing vehicles are required to keep a three-foot distance from a bicyclist, this isn’t always possible.
- Wear bright-colored clothing. This makes you more visible to others.
- Keep an eye out for potential road hazards such as potholes, gravel or debris that could make you fall.
- Ensure that your bicycle has a front headlight and the appropriate reflectors as required by state law.
Bicycle Accident Injuries
Although any type of injury is possible when a bicycle rider collides with a motor vehicle, the following are among the most severe. Serious injuries can result in hospitalization and resultant high medical bills as well as an extended period away from work. When a bicyclist injury has been caused by a negligent driver, these and other expenses can be recovered with the help of an experienced bicycle accident lawyer. Some of the following injuries are:
- Concussion is a common injury in any type of accident and can heal in time. However, some head injuries to bicyclists can be severe and result in permanent cognitive changes in the individual.
- Facial trauma such as dental and eye injuries, lacerations and fractures can cause permanent damage. Scarring or disfigurement from those injuries may require surgeries to repair.
- Broken bones are common due to the impact with a vehicle or ground. Simple breaks may heal easily while others might require surgery to repair.
- Abdominal trauma may cause internal bleeding or damage to organs. This dangerous type of trauma requires fast medical intervention.
- Chest trauma can include deep bruising, broken ribs or even a punctured lung, requiring extensive medical care.
Related Articles by Citrus Heights Personal Injury Lawyer Ed Smith
Citrus Heights Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Citrus Heights personal injury lawyer. If you or a loved one experienced injuries in a bicycle collision with another vehicle or object, you may be able to recover compensation to pay your expenses. For free and friendly advice, contact me at (916) 921-6400, or I can be reached at (800) 404-5400 or by filling out the online contact form.
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