New York is a bustling metropolis with traffic congestion at every turn. It can be difficult for cyclists to share the road in any urban area, but New York is especially dangerous.
There are motorists, pedestrians, skateboarders and roller-bladers scuttling about, and few of them pay much attention to cyclists. Without protection, cyclists are incredibly vulnerable to collisions. Several campaigns promote bicycle safety and offer advice to prevent collisions. If you are the victim of a bicycle accident, you may sustain extensive injuries, but a personal-injury attorney may be able to help. Jaroslawicz & Jaros, PLLC has won more than $2 billion in compensation for their clients. Call 212.227.2780 to speak with an award-winning personal-injury lawyer in New York City today, and read on for three tips for staying safe on a bicycle:
- Position Your Bicycle
It is important for bicyclists to ride in the road instead of on the sidewalk. The street provides the safety of traffic rules, but pedestrians and other travellers litter the sidewalks without direction. Cyclists should ride with the flow of traffic, staying on the right side of the road and avoiding the left. If the sidewalk is empty, do not succumb to temptation. Sidewalks are for pedestrians, not bicycles. If you hit a pedestrian on the sidewalk, you are liable for the accident. City officials encourage cyclists to use lanes or paths marked for bicycles wherever possible.
- Use Safety and Visibility Equipment
There are many safety gadgets available for cyclists, and most of them are fairly practical. Cyclists should equip their bikes with visibility equipment, including white headlights, red taillights and reflectors. Bright clothing can also make you more visible to other road users in the dark. Additionally, riders can install a horn or bell to alert those nearby of their presence. The New York State Department of Transportation also recommends helmets, which are mandatory for any rider under the age of 14.
- Obey the Rules of the Road
Many bicyclists take risks in traffic, weaving between cars and looking for any opportunity that offers a quicker route. Unfortunately, this can result in battles between cyclists and motorists, and the car often wins because it is faster, bigger and more durable. Taking a risky chance may well cause massive injury, and cyclists must adhere to traffic rules and safety protocols. Obey red lights, stop at stop signs, signal your intentions, wait for pedestrians at intersections and keep a safe following distance from other vehicles. Be alert for parked cars, as well as car doors that suddenly open. In many cases, bicycle accidents are catastrophic, particularly when they involve a car or truck. Injuries are serious, expensive and often life altering. If you are involved in a collision with a car, a personal-injury attorney may be able to help you collect compensation for emotional distress, medical expenses or lost wages. Call Jaroslawicz & Jaros today at 212.227.2780 to speak with a qualified professional about your case.