Getting around by bicycle is a popular way to get where you’re going in Lawrence County, but bicycle accidents are not uncommon. Bicycle accidents are sometimes the fault of the cyclist, but that’s more the exception than the rule. All too often, these accidents are completely preventable if other drivers on the road would pay closer attention to what they’re doing, yield to bicyclists when the law requires it, and take precautions to ensure the safety of cyclists on the road and the shoulder. This doesn’t always happen, and bicycle accidents can cause life-altering injuries that follow the cyclist forever. If you have been injured as a cyclist, you need to reach out to SMT Legal as soon as possible to preserve your right to collect damages for your injuries and hold the at-fault party accountable for their negligence or poor choices.
Bicycle Accident Statistics
While cycling has become an increasing choice of transportation, so has the average age of bicycle accident victims increased. In 1988 the average age of cyclists killed in crashes with motor vehicles was 24; in 1998, it was 32; in 2004, it was 39; in 2014, it was 45.
While any bicyclist is at risk for being in a crash when sharing the road with motor vehicles, bike accident statistics show that many accidents have certain factors in common:
- 88 percent of cyclists that are killed in bike accidents with motor vehicles are male
- 71 percent of bicyclist fatalities happen in urban areas
- There’s a greater risk of bike fatalities occurring at night, with 20 percent occurring between 6 pm and 8:59 pm.
- In 2012, 66 percent of bicyclists who suffered fatal injuries were not wearing helmets
- 19 percent of cyclists who were killed in 2014 were intoxicated, with blood alcohol levels of 0.08 or higher
Who’s to Blame?
Although it might seem obvious at first that the motor vehicle driver is to blame in most bicycle accidents, there are often a number of factors contributing to the accident. Sometimes the driver was at fault for failing to yield to the cyclists, or perhaps they were distracted and didn’t take notice of the bicyclist sharing the road with them. But sometimes the bicyclist might be at fault, too. Riding against traffic, failing to stay in the designated bike lane or ignoring traffic laws can cause crashes also. A qualified bicycle accident lawyer can help determine who was at fault by conducting a thorough investigation of the accident, and the events leading up to it.