As the weather warms up in Illinois, more and more people take their bicycles out of storage and onto the street. We have handled a number of cases for injured bicyclists. Due to the lack of protection for a bicyclist, bicycle accidents are particularly dangerous.
According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, over 3,000 crashes involving pedalcyclists (or bicyclists) occurred in 2014. In most of these crashes, the bicyclist sustained severe injuries. However, 27 were fatal.
One way to help prevent bicycle accidents from happening is through education.
Before you take your bike for a ride, you should know about the 3 most common types of bike accidents:
1. The “Right Cross”
The “Right Cross” happens when a vehicle is either stopped at an intersection or exiting from a side street or driveway. At this point, the bicyclist has already crossed in front of the vehicle.
The vehicle then pulls forward and hits the bicyclist. The car could also block the bike’s path at the last minute, making it impossible for the cyclist to avoid a collision.
2. The “Left Cross”
The “Left Cross” occurs when a vehicle turning left strikes a bicyclist traveling in the opposite direction. Upon impact, the vehicle may hit the cyclist’s left side. If the driver turns into front of the bike, the cyclist may no choice but to collide with the right side of the vehicle.
3. The “Right Hook”
The “Right Hook” bicycle accident can happen two ways. The first type happens when the driver fails to see a bicyclist crossing the street on which they’re turning right. The vehicle then completes the turn, hitting the biker in the process. The second variation occurs when a driver passes a bike rider, and then quickly makes a right turn with insufficient space, causing the bicyclist to run into them.
>> 5 Bike Riding Safety Tips Just for You! <<
#1: Wear bright, reflective clothing when possible to be more visible to drivers.
#2: Equip your bike with a headlight and turn it on whenever you go for a ride.
#3: Try to make eye contact with drivers before crossing streets.
#4: Ride about 6 inches from the curb, inside the white line at the edge of the road.
#5: Ride your bike on the side of the road, not on the sidewalk.
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