Auto-Bicycle accidents happen every day around Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Despite campaigns and new laws to end distracted driving, it continues to be the leading cause of car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents and the same goes for auto-bicycle accidents. Bicyclists sometimes need to ride on busy roads like JFK Memorial Highway in New Bedford or North Main St. from Providence to Pawtucket. As a driver it’s important to be aware of bicyclists to help to prevent more bicycle accidents from happening.
Common Auto-Bicycle Accident Causes To Watch Out For
Your average car weighs around 2 tons, while your average bicycle weighs 20 pounds. In the event of a collision, the bicyclist will most likely be the one to come away with severe and catastrophic injuries. Here are some common scenarios which all too often lead to life-changing, sometimes tragic auto-bicycle accidents:
The Right Cross – Possibly the most common cause of auto-bicycle accidents. This occurs when a car is pulling out of a street or driveway to the right of the cyclist in motion. This can result in two different types of collision. Either the car will clip or collide with the bicycle, or the car will pull in front of the cyclist with no time to react and the bicycle will crash into the side of the car. Either can be deadly, but can be avoided by both parties driving / riding defensively and ALWAYS being aware of their surroundings.
The “Door Prize” – Watch that door! A “door-prize” or getting “doored” occurs when a car is parked and the driver exits the vehicle without glancing in the rear-view mirror to be sure that there isn’t a bicycle approaching. This can do a lot of damage to a cruising bicyclist due to the fact that it appears to come out of nowhere, giving the cyclist little to no reaction time. A smart cyclist will keep his/her attention on activity further up the road, as well as to not ride too close to the line of parked vehicles if possible. And drivers, make sure to check your rear-view before swinging that door open.
Over-trusting The Bike Lane – Many cities are instituting bicycle lanes, which is a terrific thing for bicycle safety in general. However, these special lanes can also be deadly. Just because this is designate lane for bicycles does NOT mean that every driver is going to be aware. Distracted driving prevents people from seeing other cars, so you can bet their ability to notice a bicycle is even less. Letting your guard down in a bike lane is a bad idea.
What Can A Bicyclist Do To Be Prepared?
The best that you can do to keep yourself safe as a bicyclist is to make sure that your bike is tuned up and has safety lights and reflectors, wear a helmet and reflective clothing, and ALWAYS ride defensively. Check out bicycle laws for Rhode Island and Massachusetts to be in the know.
Contact An Experienced Massachusetts & Rhode Island Auto-Bicycle Accident Attorney
If you have been injured or lost a loved one in an auto-bicycle accident due to the negligence of a distracted driver please contact The Law Office of Dussault & Zatir to speak with one of our experienced attorneys. We’ll help you to get the compensation that you deserve.
*The above is not to be considered as legal advice. Every case is different and the laws which apply may differ from state to state.
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