A new report released by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) delivers some upsetting news: the state of Florida ranks as one of the top states in the nation for number of cyclist fatalities. The report analyzed data in states across the nation regarding bicycle accidents, as well as offered some bicycle safety suggestions to states hoping to reduce their rate of cyclist fatalities.
Number of Bicycle Fatalities on the Rise
The number of car accident deaths in the U.S. increased one percent during the two-year time period of 2010 to 2012. Bicyclist fatalities, on the other hand, increased 16 percent during the same time period.
What’s more, the number of cyclist fatalities is much higher in urban areas compared to rural ones. The GHSA report indicates that of all cyclist fatalities recorded in 2012 in the U.S., 69 percent were in urban areas (that’s compared to 50 percent in the year 1975).
Other States are Dangerous Too
Florida isn’t the only state where cyclists need to be on the alert. Accident numbers for cyclists are high in populous states like those listed below.
- New York
Between 2010 and 2012, Florida took to the number two spot, with 329 recorded cyclist fatalities. California was first with 338.
Over that time period, Florida saw an increase of 37 bicyclist fatalities from 83 in 2010 to 120 in 2012. This was the largest increase in the nation. California saw an increase of 23 fatalities.
How Cyclists Can Protect Themselves
The report released by the Governors Highway Safety Association recommended the following tips, listed below, for bicyclists to help protect themselves while riding.
- Using marked bike lanes and bike boulevards
- Using a light while riding before or after daylight hours
- Wearing a helmet
- Reducing alcohol consumption while riding
The report also suggested that state governing bodies do their part.
- Introduce bicyclist and motorist safety education
- Increase roadway lighting
- Put in place laws to protect cyclists
- Add infrastructure to facilitate road sharing
- Employ techniques to decrease motor vehicle speeds
According to a November 2014 article by WPTV, police offers in Florida are stopping cyclists who are riding without a light after daylight hours, and providing lights to cyclists who can’t afford one on their own.
If You’ve Been Injured in a Bike Accident in Fort Lauderdale
Being in a bicycle accident is a terrifying experience, and can cause serious repercussions for your health and future. If you are injured in a cycling accident in Florida, you may have the right to recover damages by filing a civil suit against a negligent driver. A successful claim can provide you with the compensation you need to pay for your lost wages, medical bills, and any other damages suffered.
If you need legal help, contact the Fort Lauderdale injury attorneys at Chalik & Chalik for a free case consultation. Our team will fight hard for you! Reach us today at 855-529-0269, or just fill out our contact form to schedule a consultation.