In many big cities, such as Chicago, it's not uncommon for people to commute to and from work on a bicycle. For some, this is better than driving their car (and dealing with parking) or relying on public transportation.
There are many benefits of bicycling to and from work, including the ability to better control your schedule. Along with this, it allows you to save both time and money.
Unfortunately, there is one major downfall associated with this mode of transportation: the potential of being involved in a serious accident.
While most motor vehicle operators realize that they need to share the road with bicyclists, this is not the case with all of them. Instead, there are people who don't care to share the road. These are the drivers who are most likely to cause an accident.
As a bicyclist, you can wear safety gear, such as a helmet, to help prevent injury in the event of a crash. Even so, since you don't have much protection between you and the vehicle, a serious injury is always possible.
Top causes of bicycle accidents
There are many causes of bicycle accidents, all of which you need to be aware of when you jump in the saddle and begin to hit the peddles.
Negligence by a driver comes in many forms, including but not limited to:
- Running a stop sign or traffic light.
- Distracted driving (such as texting or talking on a cellphone).
- Drifting into a bike lane.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Opening a car door before checking to see if a bicyclist is approaching.
When a driver makes one or more of these mistakes in close proximity to a bicyclist, there is a much greater chance of an accident.
If you're involved in a bicycle accident, there are three basic steps you need to take:
- Receive immediate medical attention, even if you don't initially believe you've been injured.
- Collect information regarding the cause of the accident, such as if the driver acted in a negligent manner.
- Learn more about your legal rights and options for receiving compensation.
When you take these steps, you're in better position to recover from your injuries and receive compensation to help you pay for medical bills, ongoing treatment, and other expenses and damages.