WHAT TRAFFIC CHARACTERISTICS ARE RISK FACTORS FOR BICYCLISTS IN THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST?
Cycling isn’t just an enjoyable past-time, it is also a great form of exercise and an environmentally friendly method of transportation. Cycling, inevitably, though, puts people at risk for an accident when it’s necessary to share the road with cars.
While there are countless scenarios which can lead to bicycle accidents, some risk factors are more prevalent than others and cyclists should pay careful attention to minimize these risks.
COMMON RISK FACTORS FOR CYCLISTS
Those who choose to ride bicycles on busy roads should keep an eye out for the following hazards:
- Poorly maintained roads: Potholes and grooved roads may simply be nuisances when driving a car, but when riding a bicycle, these road characteristics can pose serious hazards. Cyclists should pay careful attention to road conditions and ride cautiously when these hazards are present.
- Biking across a crosswalk: If you are crossing a crosswalk on a bicycle, it is important to cross with care. While you may have the right-of-way, a driver may not be paying attention or may not realize you are about to cross. Bikers can move much more quickly than pedestrians, and an inattentive driver may not see you crossing the street. Never assume that a car will stop for you simply because you are crossing in a crosswalk.
- Drivers opening doors: If you are biking on a road, be sure to stay far enough away from vehicles to ensure that a driver or passenger can open a door without creating a hazard. If you are riding too close to a car and a door opens, you might not be able to stop in time and could slam right into the open door.
- Drivers making right turns: Drivers who are making right turns may be so focused on ensuring that they are not pulling out in front of a vehicle that they forget to make sure that there is no one crossing the road they are about to enter on a bike. When you are riding your bicycle on a road, pay careful attention to drivers who are making right turns onto the road in which you are traveling.
- Riding in a vehicle’s blind spot: If you are in the blind spot of a vehicle, the driver may not see you when merging into a different lane. Always try to avoid riding right beside a vehicle; instead, try to ride behind the vehicle and never stop beside a vehicle when coming to a stop at a stop sign or traffic light.
INJURED IN A BICYCLE ACCIDENT? WE CAN HELP
Unfortunately, the impact of an accident reaches well beyond the physical injury. If you were involved in a bicycle accident, you may be facing time missed from work and increasing medical bills. If you are suffering in the wake of a bicycle accident, the attorneys at Schauermann Thayer can help you obtain financial compensation for the damages you incurred.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a bicycle accident and you’re looking for competent representation from a team of attorneys with your best interests in mind contact us now. Don’t try to navigate a personal injury lawsuit on your own. Fill out an online contact form or call (360) 695-4244 today.