Bike Riding Safety Tips – Miami Accident Lawyer informs
The Perazzo Law Firm highly recommends the following for cyclists taking to city streets:
AVOID USING YOUR CELLPHONE
Do not use your cellphone while you are riding your bike. If you need to use your cellphone, pull over and get on the sidewalk or stop somewhere free from moving traffic. The chances of a bike rider being crashed into by a car or any other moving vehicle are practically nil when they are on the sidewalk or clear of traffic. A motorist may not see a bike rider that has stopped beside a parked car or even behind a typical city obstacle like a light pole, dumpsters, etc. Furthermore, using your cellphone while riding a bicycle greatly reduces your ability to react to any sudden obstacles or maneuvers by motorists that involve dodging or braking. Keeping your eyes on the road and hands on the handlebars of your bike is equally important as when driving a car. Staying alert and avoiding distraction by your cellphone are key to lowering your chances of being in a bicycle accident.
USE PROTECTIVE GEAR AND PROPER ATTIRE
Just like motorcycle riders, cyclists are highly advised to wear a helmet since they are designed and aim to prevent injury to the head and minimize the chances of brain injury. Blows to the head can cause long term brain injuries that can greatly reduce a person’s quality of life. Though not very popular among cyclists, knee and elbow pads are very useful to prevent scrapes and bruises. Sadly, most bike accident victims may suffer injuries to limbs that go beyond cuts and bruises. Fractures are very common in more severe accidents in which a bike rider is struck by a vehicle traveling at high speeds. In Miami, intersections are a hot spot for accidents as cyclists may think they have right of way and peddle at high speeds, failing to take in account a motorist trying to jump a green light. In any bike accident involving a car, truck, or any other motor vehicle, a helmet will greatly reduce the chances of head injuries. Wearing reflective clothing is highly advisable when operating a bicycle after sundown or riding along poorly light areas. Cyclists should refrain from wearing dark clothing when riding their bikes at night or in places where the lighting is poor, especially along roadways at night. Proper footwear is another key area worth mentioning to prevent bicycle accidents. Wearing flip-flip or sandals may sometimes lead to mis-peddling or injuries upon losing balance or during falls. Toes are sensitive to injury when a bike rider must use their feet to land properly avoid falling. Also, a bicycle rider’s toes can easily get stuck in the spokes of a moving bicycle or even caught in the chain. Thus, sports shoes or other footwear covering the entire foot, and which will not fall off in the event of an accident are highly recommended for safe bike riding and reduced chances of foot injuries.
EQUIP YOUR BICYCLE PROPERLY
Riding a bike goes beyond peddling and applying the brakes. It is highly recommended that bike riders inspect their bikes regularly to make sure their brakes are functioning properly and brake lines in good condition. They should also make sure that their tires have good treading and are properly inflated. Furthermore, all bolts must be properly fastened, and that the chain is adjusted to meet the need of pedaling at high speeds. When a chain is loose, it is more prone to popping. When a chain pops unexpectedly at high speeds while peddling, the chances of a bike rider losing control is very high as it causes a sudden loss of balance. Losing your balance amid traffic can result in serious personal injury. In Miami, the Perazzo Law Firm urges bike riders to make sure their bikes are in good operating condition before they take to the streets. Rusty chains, gears, brakes can lead to an accident. Keep you bike properly oiled and tires properly inflated to help prevent premeditated injuries. Furthermore, equipping your bicycle with reflectors and installing mirrors or signaling devices are key to enhancing the chances of being seen by motorists, especially when riding at night or along side traffic.
AVOID RIDING YOUR BIKE WHILE UNDER THE INFLUENCE
Just like drunk driving, an intoxicated bike rider increases his/her chances of suffering an accident. Sadly, a cyclist that rides his/her bike drunk, may suffer severe personal injury. Furthermore, an accident claim for compensation may fly right out the window as an experienced insurance claim lawyer may hold the bike rider at fault for an accident. Many bike accident victims are under the false impression that they can easily sue a motorist after they are crashed into. Being drunk or intoxicated, if proven by an insurance or accident investigator, can work in the defendant’s favor and hold the bike rider liable for third party damages or injuries. In Miami, the Perazzo Law Firm bike accident attorneys urge bike riders to refrain from cycling while drunk or intoxicated. If in doubt, hire a ride-share service.
OBEY THE RULES OF THE ROAD
By law, a bicycle is considered a vehicle. Thus, rules apply when riding in traffic.
- Do not ride your bicycle against the flow of traffic. Riding against traffic is illegal.
- Avoid high speeds. Bikes should not be riding faster than cars, especially when low speed limits apply.
- Right on the right of moving vehicles.
- Do not zigzag in between motor vehicles, especially in heavy or stopped traffic.
- Do not ride your bike while drunk or intoxicated. If hit by a moving vehicle, you may be found at fault or ineligible for compensation,
- Avoid cycling at night. If so, wear reflective clothing and equip your bike with lights.
To avoid bicycle accidents, in Miami, the Perazzo Law Firm strongly suggests following the advice detailed above.
If you, a friend, or relative has been injured in a bike accident, contact the Perazzo Law Firm ONLINE for a FREE initial consultation.