If You Need to Hire a Southwest Florida Bicycle Accident Attorney
In today’s society, bicycling has been becoming more and more popular. In fact, there are a multitude of bicycle clubs, bike tours, cycling events and cycling races across the nation. Riding a bicycle is a great form of exercise. It is a wonderful form of transportation, and it is also friendly to the environment. Unfortunately, along with the many benefits that cycling can bring, there are also many dangers that can come with it.
Southwest Florida Bicycle Accident Facts
- Each year about 2 percent of motor vehicle crash deaths are bicyclists. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)
- A total of 817 bicyclists were killed in crashes with motor vehicles in 2015. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)
- In 2015, 88 percent of bicyclist deaths were those ages 20 and older. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)
- There was a 64% increase in cyclists traveling to work from 2000 to 2012. (NHTSA)
- Thirty-five percent of bicyclist deaths in 2015 occurred at intersections. (Insurance Institute of Highway Safety)
- Between 2010 and 2012, on a per capita basis, Florida recorded an annual average of about 5.7 cyclist deaths per million residents, by far the most of any state. (Governors Highway Safety Assn.)
In December 2016, NBC-2 News did a report on bicycle accidents in Collier County, Florida. Their report states that bicycle accidents in Collier Count exceeded triple digits in 2016 at 122. It is their belief that this increase in number could be related to affordable housing. To view their full report visit NBC-2 News.
Common Causes of Bicycle Accident Injuries
- Distracted Driving or Riding – Cyclists can become distracted while riding just as drivers of motor vehicles become distracted in their cars.
- Riding too Close to Traffic – It is important for both cyclists and drivers of motor vehicles to know the laws concerning the amount of space required to give bicyclists when passing.
- Speed of Traffic – Cyclists should be aware of their speed and the speed of the traffic around them to help determine a safe speed while riding.
- Intersections and Lane Changes – Bicycles are vehicles. Cyclists must follow the rules of the road which includes obeying traffic signals, stop signs, and signals when turning.
Florida Bicycle Laws
Florida laws are in place to help prevent a bicyclist from hurting others and to help keep them safe as well. According to the Florida Bicycle Association (FBA) and their overview of Florida Laws for Cyclists, the bicycle is legally defined as a vehicle and the bicyclist is a driver. Bicyclists have the same rights to the roadways and must obey the same traffic laws as the drivers of other vehicles. To learn more about these laws you can visit the 2016 Florida Statutes or visit Traffic Law Highlights provided by the Florida Bicycle Association.
Protect Your Rights as a Bicyclist
If you or someone you know has been injured in a bicycle accident due to the negligence of a motor vehicle driver, seek advice from an attorney experienced in personal injury. An attorney can advise you of your rights, help make sure you are receiving any required medical treatment needed, and prepare your case. The attorneys at Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice, and Purtz have over 50 years of experience in accidents involving cyclists. Call today for your free consultation.