Concerns about climate change and years of high gas prices forced a lot of people across the nation, including here in California, to consider other forms of transportation such as bicycling. Although bicycling has always been popular here in our state because of our year-round good weather, there is no denying that the number of bicyclists has grown in the last few years.
Although many larger cities with bicycle infrastructures have been able to accommodate the increase in bicycle volume, other cities in the state have not. A lack of sidewalks or bike lanes in some areas have forced many bicyclists to ride on busy streets, oftentimes sharing the roads with large vehicles. This creates an incredibly dangerous situation some of our Sacramento readers may be all too familiar with.
Crashes with bicycles seem to happen all the time here in California. And although fault can easily be that of the driver or the bicyclist, in many cases, the driver is more often at fault than the bicyclist. In many of these cases, the crashes were due to five common factors:
- Driver wasn't looking before making a turn
- Driver was distracted prior to the collision
- Driver failed to yield right of way
- Visibility was blocked or reduced by surrounding environment
- Driver opened the door of a parked car without looking
Because bicycles offer no protection to riders, injuries suffered in an accident can be incredibly severe or even fatal. That's why it's not only important for riders and drivers to be aware of their surroundings but for cyclists to seek compensation after a crash, especially if it's determined that the driver's negligence was the reason for the collision.