Florida has the perfect weather for bicyclists, and as a result of this, millions of bicycles hit Florida roads every day. However, Florida is also a very dangerous place for bicycles. According to the AAA, out of the 783 bicyclist deaths in the country in 2017, 125 of them occurred in Florida. This makes Florida the number one deadliest state for bicyclists.
Common Causes of Bicycle Fatalities
There are a number of different ways that a bicycle fatality can occur. Some fatalities are the fault of the bicyclist, but many result from negligence on the part of a motor vehicle driver. Some common causes of bicycle accidents include:
- Failure to Yield the Right of Way—one of the most common reasons for bicycle fatalities is the failure of drivers to yield the right of way to bicycles. This is the cause of one-third of deadly bicycle accidents.
- Bicyclist Not Visible—bicyclists should have lights on their bicycles when riding at night. Florida law requires bicyclists to have a light on the front and back of their bicycle when riding at night. The most dangerous time for bicyclists is between 9:00 p.m. and midnight. Poor visibility can also be the result of poor lighting on the roadways.
- Failure to Obey Traffic Signs and Signals—drivers and bicyclists who fail to obey signs and signals such as red lights and stop signs can cause serious accidents.
- Making an Improper Turn—this often happens when a driver makes a right turn without checking for a bicyclist coming up behind them.
Preventing Bicycle Accidents
Many drivers in Florida fail to obey the traffic laws that are in place to protect cyclists. Learning how to drive around bicycles properly should be an important part of driver education classes. In addition, cities should make roads safer for bicycles. The addition of more bike lanes and protected areas for bicycles to ride can make the roads safer for bicyclists and motorists.
Contact an Experienced Bicycle Accident Attorney
If you or someone you love has been injured in a bicycle accident, you may want to have your case evaluated by a Tampa Bay bicycle accident attorney. At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, we’ve been helping injured Floridians for over 30 years. Contact us onlineor call us at 800-753-5203 to set up your free consultation today.