As climate change concerns and a heightened awareness of the need for regular exercise rise, more individuals are choosing to ride bicycles for their daily commutes or for leisure. However, bicyclists can face dangers on the roads, especially in busy areas without clearly defined bike lanes. In 2020, 938 bicyclists were killed in traffic accidents. In the Washington, D.C. area alone, 29 percent of traffic fatalities were attributed to bicyclists and pedestrians. It’s no question that bicyclists are required to exercise extra caution on the roads, especially when drivers of larger vehicles are often not looking out for them.
According to reports, a bicyclist recently died in a collision with a truck driver in the Washington, D.C. area, near George Washington University. The collision happened at an intersection in Foggy Bottom, where officers believe the truck driver was attempting to turn right while the bicyclist attempted to ride ahead of the truck on the passenger side. The right passenger side of the truck struck the bicyclist during the turn. The hurt bicyclist died from his injuries in the hospital the same day as the accident. The incident is still under investigation and comes less than a week after another bicyclist died in a collision with a dump truck in the D.C. area, raising concerns about bicycle safety in the city.
How Can D.C. Bicyclists Stay Safe?
Bicycling can be a climate-friendly, healthy, and safe way to travel. Given the worrying statistics about bicyclist deaths in traffic accidents, however, bicyclists may consider taking additional steps to stay safe on Washington, D.C. roads. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says bicycle riders can take measures to help ensure their safety. These measures include wearing a helmet that fits properly and other preparatory steps, such as wearing appropriate footwear and attire like bright clothing and reflective gear.
In addition, the NHTSA says there are precautions bicyclists can take while driving to better guarantee their safety from crashes. Bicyclists should ride with the flow of traffic, obey all road markings and signs the way a car would, and assume car drivers cannot see them. Bicyclists should also ride predictably, meaning they should drive where they are expected to be seen, use hand signals appropriately, and avoid sidewalk riding, as drivers often don’t expect fast-moving traffic on sidewalks.
However, even with these steps, sometimes accidents and mistakes can still occur. If you or someone you know were biking safely and got injured in a Washington, D.C. traffic accident, you need an experienced personal injury attorney to help get the compensation you deserve.
Contact a D.C./Maryland Personal Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a bicycle or other vehicle accident in Maryland or Washington, D.C., contact the attorneys at Schupak Law Firm today. The attorneys at the Schupak Law Firm have years of experience in a wide range of personal injury and wrongful death cases. Get in touch with our office at 240-833-3914 today to discuss your case with our dedicated team.