Avoiding Traffic Injuries: How Motorists Can Ensure Safety of Bicyclists

Although there are millions of drivers in the US, most of us enjoy other modes of travel too such as walking, riding motorcycles, and bicycling. The rule is to share the road—and to do so safely—but it is easy to become impatient with others who may be traveling at a more leisurely pace; for instance, you may enjoy riding bikes with your family in your free time on the weekend or while on vacation, but find yourself highly annoyed by the bicyclist ahead of you in traffic on a Monday morning.

Many of us are consumed by time as we drive from home to work to errands and other activities—and this can carry over into our attitude while driving. Some days it may just seem like everything and everyone are moving far too slowly—especially when there is a big work project due, kids are running late to school, and you are chomping at the bit to complete one task after another. No matter the time constraints though, safety should be the priority when sharing the road. Extra precautions must be taken when traveling near pedestrians and bicyclists because they are so much more vulnerable in traffic situations, and accidents could more easily result in serious injuries or even fatalities for them.

Here are some tips for avoiding accidents with bicyclists:

  • Be patient – if cyclists are not able to travel in bike lanes or on paths, they may be riding in front of you and can cause a slowdown. Be sure to give them a wide berth. If the bicyclist is traveling behind you, be aware of their location and proximity in case you must brake suddenly.
  • Put down the distractions – don’t let the smartphone or other electronics in the car distract you from safe driving practices. Far too many injuries and fatalities for bicyclists and others are caused by distracted drivers today.
  • Watch your speed – be especially cautious in areas where bicyclists are traveling. Check (and doublecheck!) your blind spots, use side mirrors, and pass them with great caution.
  • Be alert when turning right into a crosswalk area– lack of focus or high speeds when turning without realizing what (or who) might be right around the corner is a common reason for accidents.
  • Look out before opening your door when parking on the street – serious injuries can be caused when bicyclists collide with car doors.

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.