During May, people all over the United States – including our very own Houstonians – are celebrating National Bike Month. Whether it’s biking to work or school; riding for exercise and to explore, there are a number of reasons people decide to use their bike to get around.
Unfortunately, there are also serious safety concerns for cyclists. According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration:
- In 2015 there were 818 bicyclist deaths.
- There was a 6 percent increase in bicyclist fatalities between 2006 and 2015.
- There was a 64 percent increase in people riding their bikes to work from 2000 to 2014.
- 45,000 bicyclists were injured in 2015.
- 71 percent of bicyclist fatalities occurred in urban areas.
- Texas is in the top three for bicyclist fatalities in the nation.
With the hope that you and your loved ones will stay safe this month – and for a lifetime – your Houston personal injury lawyers at Lapeze & Johns have compiled safety tips to help you stay safe while you enjoy your bike rides this month and onwards.
In the event that you or a loved one is injured in a bicycle accident involving a motor vehicle, you are not alone. The dedicated and experienced team of Lapeze & Johns has over 35 years of experience protecting innocent victims to get the recovery and legal protection they deserve. Trust us with your case.
Please consider the following safety tips as you ride your bike.
Protecting Yourself (and Others) When Riding Your Bike
It’s important that bicyclists recognize that they are just as responsible for their actions as individuals who are driving a vehicle. Bicyclists must follow the same laws as other vehicles on the roadway and most operate their bikes in a manner that does not harm others or themselves.
To keep you and your loved ones safe, it’s best to adhere to the following safety rules when riding your bicycle:
- Safety equipment saves lives! Always wear your helmet and ensure that it fits properly.
- Always keep both hands on the handlebars and never attempt to perform any unexpected maneuvers when on the roadway.
- Never attempt to ride your bike when under the influence of alcohol. One of the most noteworthy trends is that in 35 percent of bike-motor vehicle crashes, either the driver or the bicyclist had blood alcohol concentrations of 0.08 g/dL or higher.
- Ride with the flow of traffic and obey all traffic lights, laws, and right-of-ways.
- Wear protective gear (i.e. reflective coats and vests) and use lights, especially at night, to make yourself visible to motorists and other cyclists.
- Yield to pedestrians.
- Avoid any distracted “driving” behaviors: do not text, use your cell phone, listen to music, attempt to eat/drink, or perform any actions that take your attention away from the road.
- Practice defensive bike riding safety; assume that motorists and other pedestrians/bicyclist do not see you.
- Slow down when approaching hazardous roads, intersections, construction areas, or highly populated areas.
While accidents are not 100% avoidable, these safety tips can help to greatly decrease your risk of being involved in a serious accident and can help to minimize injuries even if you are.
Should you be involved in an accident, there are two important steps to take:
1. Get the medical care you need immediately and continue to follow all medical care routines.
2. Contact the police department to file a report just as if you were in a car accident.
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a bicycle-motor vehicle accident, contact the experienced and hardworking Houston personal injury attorneys of Lapeze & Johns today.
Being involved in any type of accident can lead to serious health issues and injuries; this is especially true for bicyclists who have been struck by a motor vehicle. With over three decades of experience and more than $385 million collected for the injuries of our clients, trust in the reputation of Lapeze & Johns.
You are not alone. Our Houston personal injury lawyers will work closely with you to develop a strong case, keep you involved in every aspect of the decision-making process, and will fight tooth-and-nail for a positive resolution for your case.