According to recent statistics from the California Highway Patrol's Statewide Integrated Traffic Reporting System, bicyclists are in particular danger on our state's highways. This fact was highlighted recently when eight bicyclists were hit and injured by a car going the wrong way on Fiesta Island near San Diego. Six of the eight victims were hospitalized, and the driver was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.
While this accident is certainly unique in that eight cyclists were hit by one driver at one time, it is in no way unusual in terms of the injuries sustained by bicyclists every day on our highways and surface streets.
According to Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, in 2012, 726 people lost their lives due to a bike/motor vehicle accident. This is an increase from the year before. Bike/motor vehicle accidents hover around 50,000 accidents per year. In 2012, 29 percent of biking accidents were caused by a car.
In California, 147 people died and another 13,921 were injured in 2012. This means that California accounted for 20 percent of all bicycle deaths and 28 percent of all bicycle accident injuries in the nation. That same year, Roseville accounted for eight of the bicycle fatalities and 547 of the injuries, making it one of the more dangerous cities for cyclists.
The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center has posted several tips for drivers. First, be alert. Scan the roads, double check before making a turn and do not drive while distracted. Second, be responsible. It is important that you yield to pedestrians at crossings and give bicyclist three feet of room. Finally, be patient. It is important that you obey the speed limit and traffic laws.
Cyclists can also take steps to avoid tragic accidents. Watch out for cars and yield the right of way even if the driver is out of line. It is better to yield than to be hit by a car! Further, make yourself easy to spot with reflective tape or brightly-colored clothing as well as lights on your bike if you ride at night. Avoid the use of alcohol while riding.
Even if you follow all the safety rules, however, no one can guarantee that the other people on the road will drive safely. No one can predict another person's negligence. If you or someone you love has been injured in a motor vehicle accident involving a bicycle, contact the Amerio Law Firm in Roseville today. The Amerio Law Firm offers the help of attorneys who are ready to fight for your rights. Call today for a free initial consultation.