People ride bicycles for a variety of reasons. Not only do bicycles serve as reliable modes of transportation, but they also provide enjoyment, leisure, and exercise for many, especially to those who reside in Southern California.
Not too long ago, my firm was brought a case that involved a man in his sixties, who started riding a bicycle in an effort to stay more active. He was also looking to enjoy his time in retirement. During one of his bike rides, he was tragically struck by a drunk driver. Eyewitnesses present at the scene say he flew more than 210 feet in the air before his chest was crushed by a tractor-trailer rig. We sued the man who was driving drunk as well as his employer, who knew his employee had been drinking all night. We were able to provide his widow and his family with the justice they deserved. You can learn more about this case in this Bicycle Accident video below.
Bicycle-related accidents and deaths are not uncommon occurrences. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 677 Americans lost their lives in 2011 from bicycle related accidents. This number is 9 percent higher than the 623 bicycle-related deaths that occurred in 2010. Alcohol involvement, either by the bicyclist or the automobile driver, sadly accounts for 37% of bicycle-related deaths.The month of May is Bike Safety Month, and there are steps that can be taken to help ensure that every day provides time to observe the importance of bike safety.
Before heading out on a bike ride, keep the following bike safety tips in mind:
• Always wear helmet that fits properly and securely. For more information on the proper fit of helmets for children, read our past post on Kids Are At Increased Risk For Bicycle Accidents.
• Remember to obey the same rules of the road as automobile drivers when riding a bicycle. This means using turn signals when appropriate, riding within the bike lane markings, and riding in the same direction as car traffic.
• Consider wearing fluorescent or brightly colored clothing when riding. It is also wise to install a light onto your bicycle, especially if you are a frequent nightrider.
• If you are operating any kind of vehicle, bicycle, car, or otherwise, never drink and drive.
For more information on Bike Safety Month, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Be a “Roll” Model site.
If you or a loved one has been involved a bicycle or pedestrian accident, my law firm may be able to help. Don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation by calling 1-800-676-5295, or by sending us a message.