With warmer conditions returning, it's only a matter of time before we can resume our favorite outdoor activities from fishing and softball to gardening and, of course, biking. However, it's important for those ready to return to the streets on their bicycles -- whether for leisure, exercise or as a primary mode of transportation -- to remain vigilant.
That's because those motorists who choose to engage in reckless behavior on a regular basis -- speeding, talking and texting while driving, running red lights, etc. -- will more than likely not be keeping their eyes open for bicyclists, especially after the long winter.
If you need any more convincing, consider statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration concerning the number of bicycle accident injuries and fatalities in 2012, the most recent year for which complete data is available.
The NHTSA found that 49,000 pedalcyclists were injured and another 726 were killed in motor vehicle accidents. This accounted for 2 percent of all traffic accident injuries and 2 percent of all traffic accident fatalities.
In addition, these 726 pedalcyclist fatalities in 2012 were six percent higher than those for 2011, and the highest number since 2006.
The sad reality about bicycle accidents caused by negligent motorists is that they even when they don't prove fatal, they can still prove life changing. Simply put, even the most safety-oriented bicyclists are no match for the size, weight and speed of the motor vehicles operated by the drivers with which they share the road.
Indeed, traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, severe lacerations, internal injuries and spinal cord trauma are just a few examples of the bodily harm that people can sustain in bicycle accidents.
At The Terry Law Firm, we can help families who have lost loved ones in bike accidents or those who have been injured in such accidents seek justice. Please visit our website to learn more about what we can do to help.