Do Bicycle Accidents Grow as More People Ride?
Is it true that since more people ride bicycles more accidents are occurring on and off the road? Statistically speaking it is a possibility, as the reemergence of bicycles as a primary means of travel is relatively new. In the 1980s, after all, no one used bicycles. Now, thanks to a new nationwide health trend, thousands of cyclists ride to work every day in major cities across the U.S., so much so, that seeing a bicyclist on your morning drive to work is probably not uncommon.
A Lack of Respect for Bicycle Riders?
With all of this bicycle popularity, one would hope everyone would just get along. However, there seems to be a lack of respect (even hatred) coming from motorists towards their two-wheeled friends. Perhaps this is because most accidents and crashes between cyclists and cars is the fault of the car. It is common to read news reports about young men and women who are run over by buses, speeding cars, or trucks breaking the rules. According to other reports (though city and state reports can vary) most crashes seem to happen in the rush hour during the afternoon, and most of the people injured are younger—school aged, college-aged or just out of college.
While we hope no motorist would intentionally try to hurt a bicycle rider, the lack of respect is serious. Traffic laws are designed to protect everyone who uses the road, pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcycle riders, car drivers, truck drivers, and everyone else. When drivers don’t follow the rules, people get hurt. Drivers of motorized vehicles are reminded to slow down, not try to pass bicycles up in narrow positions, and not follow behind too closely. Sometimes motorists crash into bicycles simply because they are not paying attention and are texting, using a phone or wandering off in their own minds.
Prejudice In Court
Unfortunately, when a car driver does not follow the rules, the bicyclist is usually hurt very seriously even if it does little damage to the cars around him/her. Surprisingly, some lawyers will actually admit that motorists have a prejudice against bicyclists. And so much so, that now a bicycle lawyer has to go to great lengths to inform and educate the jury to make sure that everyone has an open mind—and isn’t immediately discounting the rights of the bicycle rider.
Insurance companies have contributed to this problem. Every insurance company has teams of people with one goal in mind: avoid paying for claims. Even in case where their insured wrongfully hurt or killed someone they try to pay nothing. Insurance companies dispatch people to intersections of crashes, to homes of victims, and witnesses. They will speak with police officers, paramedics and even doctors to try and limit or avoid responsibility. Most are skilled to act like they care. Some even talk about how bad the injured victim is, smearing him/her.
What about you? Have you recently been in an accident involving a bicycle claim? Of course, it is most important that you seek medical attention, if needed. Then, immediately speak to a lawyer before saying anything or accepting anything. A good bicycle attorney can tell you your rights and make sure you are protected. You may have the right to compensation for your injuries even if the insurance company tells you you don’t.
At Dixon Law Office. we have the experience in the courtroom and on the bike. We can advise you of your rights. And if you have a case, no one will do better for you. Call Dixon Law Office today at 888-354-9880 or go to our website. We are Attorneys Making It Right for you.