Bike accidents continue to rise, according to a new study published in the medical journal Injury Prevention. According to this research, both the cost of and the number of bicycle accidents have risen over the past decade. Learning more about biking accidents, how and where they occur, and the sometimes-devastating aftermath can help you avoid this increasingly widespread problem.
More Bikes on the Road
Biking is eco-friendly and an affordable way to get to work or school. The added health benefits of cycling also make it appealing to a growing number of fans. As more of us take to the roads, the number of accidents naturally climb.
Slow Infrastructure Adaption to Biking
While individuals have been finding that biking has many benefits and hitting the road in record numbers, towns and municipalities have been slower to catch on. Areas with aging infrastructure are more likely to have bicycle accidents, since they are simply not equipped to safely integrate cyclists into traffic.
When towns and cities try to improve safety, though, the number of injuries drop dramatically. A recent Harvard study reports that bike accidents in Boston (once one of the riskiest cities to bike in in the nation) actually fell after infrastructure and safety legislation was introduced.
The paper reveals that riders who are over the age of 45 account for slightly more than half of all of the costs associated with cycling accidents in 2013 – likely because the riders needed longer recovery time than their younger counterparts. As an active Baby Boomer population continues to retire from work and take up new hobbies, older cyclists are hitting the road in increasing numbers.
The number of bicycle accidents involving vehicles also continues to rise, while accidents created by user error or collisions with pedestrians or other bikes remained at the same levels, year after year. The report advises that the increase in interest and the growing number of bikes on the road, coupled with distracted driving, could be to blame.
Understanding the risk of biking in or around traffic, learning what your area has done to make things safe for cyclists and being aware of the potential for danger can help you avoid becoming one of the thousands of people injured while cycling this year.
If you have been in a bicycle accident, we can help; our goal is to make sure you are treated fairly and that your case gets the attention it deserves. Contact Harshbarger Law without delay if you have been the victim of cycling accident.