While it is possible to decrease the risk of ending up in a bicycle accident through practicing safety techniques like wearing reflective clothing and using bicycle lights, accidents still occur all too often. Statistics compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show that in 2015 there were 45,000 bicycle accidents. Many bicycle accidents occur because motor vehicle drivers do not pay adequate attention to their surroundings and fail to notice cyclists on the road. If motor vehicle drivers, as well as bicyclists, recognized the most common ways that accidents occurred and took steps to avoid these collisions, they could greatly reduce their chances of ending up in a bike crash.
Back-up accidents occur when motor vehicles back out into alleys or parking lots and end up colliding with bicyclists. Because bicyclists who ride on sidewalks are commonly involved in these crashes, one of the best ways to avoid back up accidents is for bicyclists to always travel on the road. Motor vehicle drivers should also make sure to look for both pedestrian and vehicle traffic before backing up into alleys or parking lots.
Dooring Bicycle Accidents
Bicyclists get “doored” when passenger vehicle occupants open the vehicle’s door directly into the bicyclist’s path. These accidents tend to occur when bicyclists ride beside lines of parked cars. Because motor vehicle occupants are responsible for dooring accidents, they should always make sure to look for approaching cyclists before opening car doors. Bicyclists, however, should also exercise caution when driving past parked vehicles by keeping several feet of distance.
Left-turn accidents occur when motor vehicle operators perform left turns but do not see a bicyclist who is traveling in the opposite direction. These accidents represent approximately half of all bicycle/passenger vehicle collisions. Bicyclists who travel on the sidewalk are commonly involved in these because motor vehicle drivers are often not looking out for bikes on the sidewalk. To reduce the risk of left-turn accidents, bicyclists should make sure to always travel on the road. Motor vehicle drivers should also remain vigilant for bicyclists when making any turns.
Right-turn accidents occur when a passenger vehicle passes a bicyclist and then turns right in front of the bicyclist’s path. These accidents most commonly occur when motor vehicle drivers do not use their turn signals or place their vehicle into a bicyclist’s path without sufficient warning. Motor vehicle drivers should make sure to signal properly and check for cyclists before making any turns.
Contact a Missouri Bicycle Accidents Attorney
If you or a loved one has been involved in a bicycle accident and someone else is responsible, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and even uncertain about how to proceed. One of the best steps that you can take in such a situation is to retain the assistance of an experienced accident attorney. Contact House Law LLC today to schedule a free case evaluation.