Advice for Safe Biking: How to Avoid a Crash and Minimize Injuries
The Oklahoma Bicycle Coalition’s data on bicycle crashes over a five-year period in the state highlights that the number of bicycling accident-related fatalities is much higher than it should be, with an average of six cyclist deaths per year in the state. There are also numerous bicycle accidents that occur in the state every year that do not result in death, but that do leave cyclists with serious injuries.
Riding a bike is a great thing, and if you’re a cyclist or bike commuter in Oklahoma City, you’re doing your body and the world a great service. However, to ensure that you can continue riding your bike for years to come, make sure to follow these tips for avoiding a crash and minimizing your injuries if something does happen–
Wear a Helmet
Perhaps the most important thing that you can do as a bicyclist is to wear a helmet every single time you ride your bike, no matter if the distance is 500 feet or 50 miles. Whether you fall or are hit, if you are wearing a helmet, your risk of death and serious traumatic brain injury is significantly reduced if you are helmeted. To be sure, BHSI.org shares that helmet use has been estimated to reduce the risk of a head injury by 50 percent, and the odds of a head, neck, or face injury by over 30 percent.
Avoid Riding in Traffic
If you ride your bike for commuting purposes, traffic can be hard to avoid. However, whenever possible, you should travel in bike lanes or designated bike paths, ride your bike in time periods of low traffic, or take alternate routes that are safer (i.e. through a neighborhood rather than a main road). If a shoulder is not available when biking, you should refrain from biking on a road unless doing so is absolutely necessary.
Make Sure Drivers Can See You
Most drivers don’t want to hit cyclists – it happens as a result of negligence combined with a driver seeing a cyclist once it’s too late. You can help cars to notice you by wearing bright colors (fluorescent is great!), always using a light on the rear and front of your bike, and wearing reflective tape. When making a turn, entering a roadway, or crossing an intersection, make eye contact with drivers before proceeding. This helps to ensure that a driver sees you and is prepared to yield to you.
Our Bicycle Attorneys Are Here to Represent You
Sometimes, even the safest actions in the world cannot stop a crash or prevent serious injuries. If you are hit by a car while riding your bike, contact our experienced Oklahoma City bicycle accident attorneys for a free consultation. We will work hard to help you get the settlement you deserve.