As a Texas cyclist, you know that riding a bicycle is a handy way to get where you need to go. However, riding on the street in traffic is dangerous. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 1,000 bicyclists die, and over 130,000 are injured in crashes on the streets every year. Therefore, one of the most important things you must do is ensure you have the proper safety accessories. You’re leaving yourself open to serious injury without the proper safety gear.
You may have all the right safety gear and still be injured in a bicycle accident because of someone else’s negligence. If this happens, you should contact a bicycle accident lawyer. They will be able to tell you if you may be compensated for any medical bills and property damage that occurs.
Injuries a Cyclist May Suffer in an Accident
Of course, for years, everyone has been made aware that your head is the most vulnerable when involved in an accident with a moving vehicle while riding a bicycle. Death and traumatic brain injuries are examples of personal injuries that may result from an accident. Some examples of traumatic brain injuries are:
- Diffuse axonal injury
- Skull fractures
Some may think that concussions, when the brain’s function changes when it hits the internal walls of the skull, only occur when the head hits the pavement. However, concussions may happen two or three seconds before hitting the pavement, caused by the force of the motor vehicle’s impact upon the rider or the bike.
Broken bones are the second most common injury when involved in an accident. Any part of the body is vulnerable to having bones broken, including the face, teeth, and eye sockets. Road rash is another concerning injury. Road rash happens when your skin gets scraped off by the road’s surface, and nerve endings are exposed. Road rash may become more severe if not treated to prevent infections.
Protective Accessories a Cyclist Should Wear
Accessories worn by the rider help minimize the chances of an accident with another moving vehicle and help cars see you better when riding at night. In addition, accessories provide a certain level of protection if you are involved in an accident. Here are examples of accessories you may wear for protection and make yourself more visible:
- Padded gloves
- Reflective or fluorescent clothing or bands
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the condition of your helmet and how you wear it will be a factor in how much protection it provides. You must replace your helmet if it is cracked, has worn straps, or is missing pads and parts. Make sure the helmet fits and is worn correctly. The helmet must have a label stating that it meets CPSC’s federal safety standard. Also, a helmet may not necessarily protect you from concussions but will save you from head-to-pavement impact-related brain trauma injuries.
Safety Equipment for the Bicycle
Not only is it important to wear visible and protective accessories on your person, but your bike should be visible too, especially at night when it’s hard for motor vehicle drivers to see cyclists. Accessories attached to the bike to enhance visibility or attention may include:
- White front headlamp
- Red rear reflectors or light
- Reflectors on the tires
- Horns or bells
In some states, it’s required to have specific safety equipment attached to the bike. For example, Texas law (Sec. 551.014b), effective September 2001, requires a white light on the front of the bike and a red reflector or light on the back to ride your bike at night legally.
Not only will accessories help minimize accidents and injuries, but make sure to be observant when riding and follow the rules of the road and local regulations. Once you’ve done everything possible to minimize your risk and you’re still injured when involved in an accident, you should consult an attorney to learn your rights.
Don’t Wait to Consult Texas Personal Injury Attorney Dale Rose About Your Injuries
If you have been involved in a bicycle accident that resulted in injuries and property damage, you should take advantage of a free consultation from Dale Rose. He realizes the suffering and stress over finances you must be going through during this time.
Dale Rose has an extensive track record of success in personal injury law and will help you get compensation for your injuries and property damage. To learn more about the compensation you may receive for your injuries and other financial loss, contact Dale Rose at (972) 634-ROSE (7673) or complete our contact form for your free consultation today.