Biking During COVID
Millions of people have been put under lockdown because of the pandemic. This means they don’t have access to gyms; public transportation is not safe, and they are stuck at home bored. Because of this, there has been a massive spike in bike sales. People are using bikes as a form of exercise, as a means of transportation and for leisure. Bikes have given people a reason to leave the house and feel free for a little while they ride around the neighborhood.
Over the past few months, Bicycle sales saw their most significant spike in the U.S. since the oil crisis of the 1970s. Many places have reported double- and triple-digit sales increases on bicycles. In March alone, there was a 121% increase in bike sales.
With the increase of bicycle users, the chances of an accident increase as well. There has been a significant increase in accident cases involving a bicycle. There has been an estimated 45% increase in bicycle accidents compared to last year.
Dangers of Biking
An accident that involves a vehicle will come with certain injuries. When the body hits the ground, it can result in bone fractures, spinal cord injuries, and head/brain injuries. Blunt force trauma to some areas of the body can be fatal. Common injuries from bicyclists hitting the ground, the windshield or other objects in accidents include:
- Head trauma
- Facial injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Neurological damage
- Spine injuries
- Ruptured discs
- Bone fractures
- And unfortunately in some cases, death
By law, bicycles on the roadway are vehicles with the same rights and responsibilities as motorized vehicles. This is a good thing because, by law, the road needs to be shared with bicycles. Even though almost every car is cautious of bikes, accidents still happen. Some of the most common causes of accidents are:
- Distraction with electronics/ phone
- Not paying attention
- Speeding/not obeying stop signs and lights
- Aggressive behavior
- Construction zones
Ride responsibly, and remember: All states require bicyclists on the roadway to follow the same rules and responsibilities as motorists.
- Don’t mess around on your phone while riding your bike.
- Pay attention to your surroundings.
- Obey all traffic rules.
- Don’t ride aggressively.
- And slow down near construction zones.
Unlike cars, bicycles don’t offer any protection during an accident. This is why it is crucial to take every safety measure to protect yourself.
- Wear a helmet. Wearing a helmet is not enforced in every city, but it is wise to wear one every time you take a ride. A properly fitting helmet will significantly decrease the chances of a head injury.
- Ride a bike that fits you—if it’s too big, it’s harder to control it.
- Ride a bike that works—it doesn’t matter how well you ride if the brakes don’t work.
- Wear equipment to protect you and make you more visible to others.
- Ride one per seat, with both hands on the handlebars.
- Carry your belongings in a backpack or strapped to the back of the bike.
- Tuck and tie your shoelaces and pant legs, so they don’t get caught in your bike chain.
- Plan your route. Choose routes with less traffic and slower speeds. Your safest route is away from traffic, in a bike lane, or on a bike path.
Night Cycling Safety Tips
Riding a bicycle at night can be enjoyable, it’s quiet, relaxing and there are fewer vehicles on the road. It could also be very dangerous if you don’t take the right safety measures.
- Wear reflective clothing to be more visible to cars that may be on the road.
- Use a powerful bike light so you can adequately see the road and any upcoming hazards.
- Reflectors on the pedals and the spokes of your bike will help you be more visible and decrease the odds of getting hit by a car.
- Avoid using routs that you are not familiar with or secluded trails. Getting lost at night can be dangerous.
It is always a good idea to take every safety measure to protect yourself from harm.
An accident can happen at any time, if you do end up in an accident, don’t hesitate to call Attorneys For ALL (281) 475-4535. Our attorneys have years of experience with a bike-related accident, and they are here to fight for you.
DRIVE DEFENSIVELY – FOCUSED AND ALERT
Be focused and alert to the road and all traffic around you; anticipate what others may do, before they do it. This is defensive driving—the quicker you notice a potential conflict, the quicker you can act to avoid a potential crash:
- Drive with the flow in the same direction as traffic.
- Obey street signs, signals, and road markings, just like a car.
- Assume the other person doesn’t see you; look ahead for hazards or situations to avoid that may cause you to fall, like toys, pebbles, potholes, grates, train tracks.
- No texting, listening to music, or using anything that distracts you by taking your eyes and ears or your mind off the road and traffic. (1)
What to do after an accident
Once the accident happens, it is crucial to take the right steps to ensure you are legally protected. Here are a few steps to take to ensure you take the right steps.
If you are able to move away from the road and traffic. When you are in a safe area, check for injuries. Do not do anything that will put you or others at risk of injury or cause further damage.
Call the police and emergency services.
The police officer can give you a report that will be used to make your case stronger, and they will get you the medical help that you may need.
Collect as much information as possible.
The driver’s ID card information, Insurance details, and a phone number. It is also important to get contact information from any witnesses that saw the accident.
Photograph the area and all the damages that are done to you, the car, and your bike. Pictures don’t lie, and these will come in handy when your attorney is negotiating with the insurance companies.
Visit a doctor.
Even if you don’t feel any pain right away, it is crucial to get examined by a medical professional. Due to the increase of adrenaline, most people don’t feel pain right away. Instead, it all kicks in a few days later.
Call an attorney.
Contact a trusted attorney that specializes in bicycle accident cases. The attorney can advise you to take the right steps to ensure maximum compensation and coverage of medical and property damage.
If you or a loved one has been in an accident, make sure to contact a trusted and experienced attorney. Our network of attorneys have years of experience dealing with accidents and personal injuries. They will negotiate with insurance companies to get you the medical help you need and get you the compensation you deserve. CALL US ANYTIME (281) 475-4535 or fill out a consultation form here to start the process.