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What Are Common Causes of Colorado Bike Accidents?

Posted on in Personal Injury

Larimer County personal injury attorney bike accident

The city of Fort Collins in northern Colorado has been recognized for being extremely bike-friendly, both for its system of trails and open spaces and its downtown amenities, but even in situations that are favorable to bicyclists, accidents can still happen. Understanding the common causes of bicycle accidents may help you avoid being involved in one, or pursue the compensation you need if you are injured. In some cases, a negligent driver may be at fault for causing the crash. 

When Do Bicycle Accidents Typically Occur?

Accidents between bicycles and cars or other motor vehicles can take place under a variety of circumstances. Some of the most common include:

  • When approaching an intersection: When a car and bike approach an intersection traveling in the same direction, a car driver may attempt to turn right into the bicycle’s path if he or she is not paying close attention. When turning left, a car may collide with a bicycle approaching the intersection from the opposite direction. Accident risk may increase if the bicyclist is traveling in the wrong direction, against the flow of other traffic.

  • When a car passes a bicycle: Colorado law requires cars to give bicycles at least three feet of space when passing or overtaking them on the same side of the road. If a driver fails to provide this buffer, an accident can occur.

  • When visibility is low: According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), most fatal bike accidents occur between 6 and 9 p.m., around the time when the sun sets and bicyclists may become less visible. Motorists should be alert and on the lookout for other vehicles, bicyclists, motorcyclists, or pedestrians on the road at all times.

  • When alcohol is involved: The NHTSA reports that 37 percent of fatal bike accidents in 2017 involved alcohol either on the part of the bicyclist, another driver, or both. Studies have proven that controlled substances such as alcohol or drugs can greatly impair a person’s ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. 

Preventing a Bicycle Accident in Colorado

As a bicyclist, you can help to reduce the risk of accidents by making sure you follow all traffic laws, including traveling in the same direction as other traffic, riding single-file if you are in a group, stopping when required at intersections, and signaling upcoming turns. You should also make sure you have the appropriate equipment, including lights and reflective clothing to enhance your visibility and a helmet to mitigate injuries in case of an accident.

If you are hit and injured by another driver, you should make an effort to gather as much evidence as possible to establish the circumstances of the accident and the other driver’s fault. An attorney can help you access and preserve evidence including video camera footage, photographs, witness testimony, and police reports that may indicate whether alcohol or distracted driving was a factor in causing the collision.

Contact a Fort Collins Bicycle Accident Attorney

Riding a bicycle can be a great form of exercise or mode of transportation. However, vehicle accidents involving bicyclists can result in severe and life-threatening injuries due to the lack of protection offered to the biker. At Hoggatt Injury Law, we know that Colorado bicyclists have the same rights as other drivers, and we want to help you protect those rights by fighting for the compensation you deserve if you have been injured. Call our reputable Larimer County personal injury lawyers today at 970-225-2190 to schedule a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.visitftcollins.com/things-to-do/outdoors/biking/

https://www.fcgov.com/traffic/bicycle_crashes.php

https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/bicycle-safety

 

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Hoggatt Law Office, P.C.

970-225-2190 | 1-800-664-3151

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Fort Collins, CO 80524

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