Bicycle Accident Fatalities on the Rise Nationwide
For more than 30 years bicycle accident fatalities were on a steady decline until 2010, when this trend reversed thanks to a spike in bicycle commuting in metropolitan areas. Over the last 15 years, the number of Americans who cycle to work has increased 62 percent, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association. With more cyclists on the road and a 16 percent surge in nationwide bicycle fatalities, safety advocates are concerned — and for good reason.
U2 frontman and humanitarian activist Bono recently escaped becoming another grim statistic two weeks ago, when he crashed his bike in Manhattan’s Central Park while attempting to avoid another cyclist. According to Reuters, Bono just underwent surgery to address fractures in his shoulder blade and face. His doctors report that the singer’s upper arm bone was shattered in several places, which required three metal plates and screws to repair. The Irish-born singer is expected to make a full recovery, but his cycling accident is another stark reminder of the dangers facing NYC bicyclists today.
NYC bicycle accident lawyers at The Sanders Firm remain dedicated to improving safety levels for cyclists in the greater New York metropolitan area, and have more than 45 years combined experience advocating for innocent victims who have suffered personal injury or death caused by the negligence of another.
Nationwide rise in cycling fatalities
Statistics show that most bicycle accidents happen to men, who made up 88 percent of injured cyclists in 2012. Not surprisingly, the majority – more than two-thirds — weren’t wearing helmets at the time of the crash. Safety advocates are raising the alarm for cyclist dangers due to a recent uptick in bicycle accident deaths throughout the country, which involved other cyclists and motor vehicles. An estimated 621 cyclists were killed in vehicular accidents in 2010, but this figure jumped to 722 in 2012 – representing a 16 percent increase.
Another glaring concern is impaired driving – not by motorists but by the cyclists themselves. Reports indicate that almost 28 percent of bicyclists aged 16 and older who suffered fatal injuries had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or more at the time of the incident.
Whether cycling for recreational purposes, exercise or an environmentally-sound way to commute to work, this basic mode of transportation has clear risks. The Governors Highway Safety Association reports that bicyclist fatalities are also more likely to occur in densely populated urban zones, with the number growing from 50 percent in 1975 to 69 percent in 2012. As an example, in 2012, nearly 40 percent of all bicycle accident deaths occurred at major city intersections.
New York (3.9 percent), along with Florida (5 percent), California (4.3 percent) and Massachusetts (4.3 percent), is ranked among the most dangerous states for cyclists, and has the highest rates of bicycle deaths in the nation.
Assitance filing a New York bike accident lawsuit
Compared to drivers and passengers in motor vehicles, bicyclists are particularly susceptible to serious personal injury in the event of a collision. Broken bones, internal injuries, spinal cord trauma and paralysis are not uncommon. Such life-altering injuries have the capacity to financially cripple the victim and put his or her family on the brink of bankruptcy. Fortunately, those who have been injured or lost a loved one in a cycling accident do have grounds for legal recourse when negligence is involved.
If you or a loved one is curious about filing a personal injury lawsuit in New York following a bicycle accident, we urge you to call us today for a free, no-obligation case review. Sanders Firm attorneys are known for seeking maximum compensation for our clients, whether procured through an insurance settlement or court award. Call toll-free to arrange your consultation at 1-800-FAIR-PLAY.
- Washington Post, Rise in U.S. bicycle fatalities concerns safety advocates http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/dr-gridlock/wp/2014/10/27/rise-in-u-s-bicycle-fatalities-concerns-safety-advocates/
- Governors Highway Safety Association, Bicyclist Safety http://www.ghsa.org/html/publications/pdf/spotlights/bikes_2014.pdf