Common Types of Bicycle Accidents
When cyclists are involved in accidents with automobiles, the potential for serious injury is very high. Bicyclists are more vulnerable than drivers because of their exposure and the weight and speed of cars. That’s why it is important for both drivers and cyclists to be aware of the common causes of accidents involving bikes and automobiles.
The Right Hook
One of the most common types of bicycle accidents is known as the “right hook.”
This occurs when a cyclist is riding on the right side of the street, either in a designated bike lane or a breakdown lane on the right side of the cars. Sometimes, a car might take a right turn, causing them to cross the cyclist’s path. The cyclist may be sideswiped as the car turns right without noticing the bike. Sometimes, the bike might “t-bone” the right side of the automobile as it makes its turn.
Drivers and cyclists can both work to make sure that “right hook” accidents don’t happen. Sometimes drivers are not aware of cyclists on the road, disregarding the bike lane where bicycles are legally traveling in traffic. If a driver turns right quickly and without notice or signaling, perhaps into a driveway or parking lot entrance, they might catch a cyclist off guard, making the driver at fault.
However, if the driver signaled their right turn, giving the bike rider a reasonable about of notice, the cyclist may be liable if they run into the car. Both the driver and the cyclist must travel the streets using the reasonable amount of care to keep others on the road safe.
The Left Cross
The left cross happens when a motorist turns left at an intersection, failing to notice a bicycle with the right-of-way and collides with a cyclist. If a driver fails to yield to a bike with the right of way, the driver is at fault.
Cyclists must make sure that they are as easily visible as possible as they approach an intersection where they have the right of way. Bike riders should avoid the temptation to cross in the pedestrian crosswalk. This can make them even less visible to drivers.
Stop Sign Intersections
Accidents at intersections with stop signs can also be dangerous for drivers and cyclists. If a car with a stop sign fails to stop or properly yield to a bike without a stop sign, they will be at fault if they strike a cyclist.
Conversely, if a cyclist rides in front of a car who has the right of way, the bike rider is at fault. Intersections with stop signs can be dangerous; both drivers and cyclists need to approach with caution.
Bicyclists can lower their chance of being injured in an accident by:
- Being as visible as possible, wearing light, bright colors and using a light if the conditions warrant it.
- Riding in designated bike lanes when available
- NEVER riding against traffic
- Never assume a car sees you. Ride at a speed that allows for quick stops or correction if necessary, especially near intersections.
Drivers can lower the risk of a collision with a bicycle by:
- Remembering that bikes are on the road and that they have a right to be there. Cars don’t own the road.
- Driving at a reasonable speed limit, which may be even slower than the posted speed limits if conditions or visibility are bad.
- Being aware of their blind spot when turning right, especially if the right turn crosses over a bike lane.
- Never assume that a cyclist sees you. If you notice a cyclist riding near you, exercise caution.
If you’ve been injured in an accident involving a car and a bicycle, contact the car accident attorneys at FL Legal Group. We represent both drivers and cyclists.
Call 1-800-984-9951 or Click Here to contact us today to talk about your accident.