Bicycle AccidentsLike pedestrians, victims of bicycle accidents are at a high risk of a serious injury or fatality when involved crashing with a motorist. In fact, California has one of the highest fatality rates involving bicyclists compared to other states. Nearly 70% involve of the fatalities involve injury to the head. Needless to say, wearing a helmet is an effect way to to protect you from a serious head injury. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), from 2001 to 2013, the number of bicyclist injuries and fatalities in the United States substantially increased.
In order for a bicyclist to pursue a claim against a driver, the bicyclist must prove the driver was negligent. Like drivers, bicyclists are obligated to obey the rules of the road. Furthermore, most cities have their own set of rules and regulations for bicyclists.
The California Vehicle Code (CVC) states:
§ 21200: Bicyclists can ride on the street except on freeways and bridges where biking is not permitted. This regulation also requires all cyclists to obey the same rules and laws as motorists, including stopping at red lights and stop signs.
§ 21202: Bicyclists must stick to the rightmost side of the lane unless passing a vehicle or making a left turn.
§ 21650: Bicyclists can leave the right side of the lane to go around construction zones or to move around slow moving traffic.
§ 21804: Bicyclists must yield to traffic before entering the roadway.
If you were put at fault on the police report for riding your bicycle against traffic, you still may be entitled for compensation for your injuries.
Common bicycle accidents are:
- Drivers opening their door without looking for oncoming traffic.
- Drivers pulling out of a driveway or an alley.
- Drivers making a turn without looking for a clear intersection.