bicycle in traffic

Many people living in and around Folsom, California, enjoy riding bicycles. While some do so for exercise or pleasure, others use bicycles as alternative transportation to and from work. Both options are an environmentally conscious choice to save money, limit fossil fuel consumption, and engage in daily exercise. While there are many benefits to bicycling in California, it is also inherently dangerous when bicyclists share the road with motor vehicle drivers.

Drivers in California must treat bicyclists on the road as other motorists. Bicyclists have the right to take a lane and occupy space in a lane just as a car would. They must move with the flow of traffic like another car. However, there are some roads where bicycles are not allowed, such as highways and freeways. With these exceptions aside, it’s generally accepted that drivers should yield to bicyclists and show them the same courtesies they would show to other motor vehicle drivers. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Bicycle accidents happen in California more frequently than many people realize.

Why Hire the Law Offices of Black and Depaoli, PC?

When you need to take legal action for a personal injury, it is essential to work quickly to ensure your claim meets the applicable statute of limitations. In California, you have two years from the date an injury occurs to file a personal injury claim to recover damages from the incident. An attorney can help injured bicyclists determine the full scope of their injuries and help identify potential defendants in the claim.

At the Law Offices of Black and DePaoli, PC, our legal team has extensive experience with bicycle accident claims in the Folsom area. If you need a bike accident personal injury lawyer in Folsom, California, our team can provide the resources and legal acumen to reach a satisfactory result. Your attorney will fully explore every potential channel of compensation available with your claim and help you maximize your recovery.

A Decline in Bike Accidents, but an Increase in Fatality

Notably, while statistics show a decline in bicycle accidents over time, the United States has experienced an uptick in fatalities following these accidents. For example, in 2018, the United States saw a total of 857 fatalities from bike accidents. This is up significantly from the year prior, when there were only 777 bike accident fatalities in the nation. Alarmingly, this trend is on a steady rise.

Why could this be? One possibility involves the increasing popularity of bicycling for commuting or daily travel. In part, this influx of cyclists also implies an increase in new, less experienced cyclists on the road. Those new to bicycling might not be familiar with certain safe biking practices. This could lead to a greater likelihood of experiencing an accident.

It should also be noted that 70% of fatal cycling accidents occur in urban environments. Due to the increasing popularity of bicycling and advocacy for the practice within cities, a good portion of the increase in cycling overall occurs in urban spaces. Cities also feature far busier and more dangerous roads, resulting in a higher likelihood of experiencing a fatality after a bike accident.

Simultaneously, cities experience multiple obstacles when it comes to installing brand-new safety features for cyclists. Despite the increase of cycling within urban areas, cities struggle to keep up with the demand for better infrastructure. Even if cities advocate and plan, many of them have yet to improve infrastructure for bicyclists. These changes will be vital in helping to stop the rise of bicycle accident fatalities.