Staying Safe While Biking
As biking has become more and more popular in Utah, injuries from bicycle accidents have also increased. Last year alone 773 cyclists were killed in the United States and an additional 44,000 were injured in traffic accidents. Utah ranks near the top of bicycle traffic fatalities per capita.
“What’s worse,” as the League of American Bicyclists points out, “is that many of these crashes involve motorists who are simply not paying attention, are speeding, are reckless with regard to the presence of cyclists, are drunk or drowsy, are distracted by their phone or CD player—a cyclist in Colorado was killed in 2005 by a driver who was text messaging—and are hitting cyclists who are in exactly the right place on the road and doing nothing wrong. A frightening number of the drivers are repeat offenders with suspended or revoked licenses and no insurance.”
Keep the following in mind:
- More than one-fifth of all bicyclist deaths occur among school age youth ages 5 to 15.
- More children go to hospital emergency departments for bicycle related crashes than for any other sport.
- Although most deaths occur as a result of bicycle and motor vehicle crashes, crashes can happen anywhere— in parks, on bicycle paths, and in driveways. Many crashes do not involve motor vehicles.
- Head injuries are the most serious type of injury and the most common cause of death for bicyclists. Bicycle helmets have been proven to reduce the risk of head and brain injury when a crash occurs by as much as 85 to 88 percent.
- Children and adults should wear a bicycle helmet every time they ride a bicycle.
- Failing to wear a helmet or using a bright white front light and a red tail light at night not only greatly increases your chances of accident and injury but may compromise your ability to obtain legal relief if you are injured.
The most serious injuries among a majority of those killed are to the head, highlighting the importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. Ninety-five percent of the bicyclists killed last year reportedly were not wearing helmets.
As listed below, there are a number of things you can do to stay safe while biking and receive compensation for your injuries if involved in an accident. Greg Hoole is an avid cyclist and attorney who devotes a significant amount of his practice to personal injury, including biking injuries. He has created this page to help you avoid injuries. If you or a loved one has been hurt as a result of the carelessness or misconduct of another, please give me a call so that I can protect your rights.
Top 10 Ways How Not to Get Hit by a Car
Top 10 Ways to Stay Safe While Biking
Top 5 Things Every Cyclist Should Do If Involved in an Accident
Guide to Bike Safety
How is your situational awareness? Take the test
Kids and Bicycle Safety
Easy steps to properly fit a bicycle helmet
Benefits of Safe Biking
NHTSA Bike Safety Video
Other helpful information:
Commuting by Bike
Salt Lake County Bike Map
State Biking Map
National Biking Map
Selected Laws Related to Bicycling in Utah
Common Biking Terms
Salt Lake County Bicycle Best Practices
Are you a bicycle-friendly employer?
Greg puts on free clinics about Utah biking law and safety for local bicycle shops and businesses, bicycle advocacy groups and other civic organizations. If you would like to schedule a clinic or attend the next scheduled clinic, feel free to contact Greg directly at 801-424-5252 or send him an email.
To learn more about your legal rights, call (801-424-5252) or email Greg for a free consultation.
Return to UtahBikingLaw.com.