Drivers and cyclists need to take precautions to avoid accidents says Philadelphia car accident lawyer Rand Spear.
Though cycling is more popular among adults, especially in major cities like Philadelphia, 25% of all injuries involving bicycles and cars in Pennsylvania were suffered by children between the ages of five and 14, according to the state Department of Transportation. In the second of a two part podcast on bicycle safety, Rand Spear, Philadelphia’s car accident lawyer, warns that drivers and cyclists need to be on the lookout for each other.
Spear says that with summer, warmer weather and kids out of school, accidents increase. “As a driver when you’re on the road recognize that in the summertime the kids are out of school, people are getting around more freely on bicycles. Be really very aware, keenly aware of your surroundings wherever you are driving,” car accident attorney Spear says.
“The more a bike follows normal traffic patterns, the safer and more predictable they become. It’s really safest when riding on the right side of the road. Some cyclists think they might be safe from the left when they can see a car coming but that’s really not the safest way to go,” Spear says. He says if a cyclist is riding against traffic to avoid a collision the oncoming driver may need to come to a complete stop. If the bike is on the right side the drivers coming from behind have more time to react and avoid an accident.
Intersections are especially hazardous for all those on the road, including drivers, pedestrians and cyclists. Cyclists should be in the correct position and lane to go where they want to go. “You really want to respect the right away of pedestrians. You should base your speed on the road condition and the volume of traffic. Be very careful, don’t assume that a car pulling out of an intersection can see you, observe what they’re doing.”
Attorney Spear warns that no matter how safe and alert a cyclist may be there are some streets that are too dangerous to bike on. “If there’s a lot of parked cars, if there’s a lot of in and out of traffic, you just want to be extra careful. Avoid riding at night. If you do so make sure everyone can see you. Wear brightly colored clothes, have a light and reflectors on your bike,” Spear says.
Cycling in twilight when the sun is low on the horizon in the morning and evening can also be especially hazardous. “There is a lot of sun glare and if motorists are driving into the sun or if you are between the driver and the sun, that driver won’t see you. If the sun is in the cyclist’s eyes, he or she may not clearly see where they’re going. If you hit a pothole or pedestrian you can lose control of the bike. Be extra cautious, go a little slower so you can observe the conditions, be mindful of your ability to stop and remain in control of your bike at all times.”
If you or a family member have been seriously injured in an accident caused by a negligent driver in Pennsylvania or New Jersey, contact Philadelphia car accident lawyer Rand Spear today at 888-373-4LAW or through his website for a free consultation. You can discuss what happened, how the law may apply and your best options for obtaining compensation for your injuries.