If you are a cyclist who enjoys going out for a ride on a regular basis, then chances are you have been involved with some close calls. Perhaps a car driver had gotten just a little too close, someone getting out of their car had not looked before stepping out, or the road wasn’t maintained properly and you had to swerve at the last second to avoid crashing from a pothole. There are so many threats to cyclists on the road, including vehicle drivers, people opening their doors after parking, street construction, debris in the road, and much more.
What are the most common reasons for bike accidents?
There are several ways that bike accidents occur, with the most common being from car doors opening, reckless car drivers, or being overtaken/sideswiped. Car door accidents happen when the driver parks, and then open their door as a cyclist is cruising by. These accidents tend to occur more often on compact urban streets where cars park in a parallel fashion, and bike lanes are painted right next to these parking spots.
Another main reason for bike accidents is because of reckless drivers. You may have experienced this yourself, where a car driver had zipped by you with only inches to spare, which sent your heart racing. Or perhaps you were actually struck by a car driver and now have injuries that require medical care. If this situation applies to you or a loved one, then you must speak with the best bicycle accident lawyer in Memphis, TN about how to hold the offending driver responsible for their carelessness.
Lastly, cyclists are vulnerable to getting overtaken or sideswiped. Being sideswiped happens when either side of the vehicle comes into contact with the right or left side of the cyclist. Drivers may complain that cyclists always ride too close to the street lane versus the sidewalk, however, if there’s parking along the sidewalk then they may be leaning more to the left to prevent being doored.
Other influencing factors for bike accidents include drunk drivers, distracted driving, speeding, not obeying street signals or signs, road defects, poor weather conditions, and bike defects.
If I get hit by a car, is it possible to walk away unscathed?
The chances of a cyclist not getting injured at all after being clipped by a car are very slim. Think about it this way, a car is so hefty and large, that the human body just cannot put up a fight against it. A bicyclist doesn’t have a protective shield surrounding their body, like a car driver does, to deflect impact. And, a cyclist will not only get hit by the car itself, but also hit the ground if ejected from their bike. Common injuries for bike accidents include:
- Soft tissue damage
- Broken bones
- Head/brain injuries
- Facial wounds
- Nerve damage
- Neck and back injuries
- Anxiety, depression, PTSD
- Fractured clavicle
- Dental/jaw injuries
- Spinal cord damage
Thanks to Patterson Bray for their insight into personal injury claims and threats on the road for bicycles.