Drivers’ Attitudes About Bicycling Contribute to Safety Problems
In the wake of a tragic death, an Everett area bike shop owner expressed a truth most cyclists have experienced. According to this entrepreneur, many automobile drivers feel that the road belongs to them. By the bike shop owner’s estimates, around 75 percent of commuter cyclists have been hit or at least grazed by automobiles. The latest collision caused the death of a 30-year-old cyclist, husband, and father who was killed by a driver that experienced an unexpected seizure behind the wheel.
Drivers cause accidents but face few legal consequences
While the League of American Bicyclists has named Washington the nation’s most bicycle friendly state for six years running, recent bike accident deaths demonstrate that more could be done to improve safety. Some believe that the problem lies in driver attitudes toward cyclists which are shaped by the law’s treatment of drivers that seriously injure or kill cyclists.
Specifically, drivers are responsible for more than half of all cycling fatalities and are rarely charged criminally in such accidents. This troubles bicycle activists, who maintain that with the exception of hit-and-run accidents and collisions involving alcohol, drivers are almost never prosecuted for their role in cyclists’ deaths. They maintain that this sends a clear message to drivers that caution need not be exercised when it comes to cyclists.
Seeking compensation for injuries or death
While criminal remedies may be inadequate, bicycle accident victims and their families may be entitled to monetary compensation for their injuries. The families of those killed in such accidents may also be entitled to damages for the losses they sustain based on the death of their loved ones.
Bicycle accidents may be more common than cyclists think. Don’t face the fallout alone. Reach out to a seasoned bicycle accident attorney at Mark. A. Hammer & Associates.