Orinda, CA May 19, 2011 As part of National Bike Safety Month, GJEL Accident Attorneys, a catastrophic injury and wrongful death law firm in the San Francisco Bay area, is reminding cyclists of the importance of practicing bike safety while…
Avid teen cyclists may not make safer motorists, says GJEL Accident Attorneys. Rules of the road apply equally to cars, trucks, bikes. More bicyclists use this mode of transportation to commute; that means higher accidents are possible. Teen drivers are encouraged to use caution and be aware of bicyclists.
San Francisco (Vocus/PRWEB ) January 20, 2010 — Teenagers who were avid cyclists as youngsters may not always make safer motorists once they get their drivers’ licenses, suggests GJEL Accident Attorneys, a San Francisco Bay area firm representing plaintiffs in catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases. Although rules of the road apply equally to cars, trucks and bicycles, there is often confusion about how they apply to the latter. Many child cyclists–or even adult cyclists–are never taught rules of the road before they begin riding.
“Especially in Northern California, where snow does not typically inhibit cyclists, everyone should learn early to share the road,” said Andrew Gillin, senior managing partner of Gillin Jacobson Ellis & Larsen (GJEL). “New or inexperienced drivers must use extra caution with more looks over the shoulder to ensure a smaller cyclist is not in a blind spot when turning, parking or opening a car door.”
Because new drivers are often focused on other motorists, cyclists face a greater accident risk from new drivers. The increase in bicycle commuters, regardless of age of rider, suggests the potential for higher accident rates with motor vehicles. A 2007 study by the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority shows bicycle ridership increased 15 percent in 2007 throughout the city over 2006 estimates.
In 2007, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported 698 pedalcyclists were killed and 44,000 injured in traffic crashes. With more bicyclists than ever using roadways, it’s imperative new drivers and riders of any age are keenly aware of how to share the road.
Cycling Rules of the Road
“If they have been following rules of the road as bicyclists, these habits should be old hat when teenagers take the wheel for the first time,” said Gillin. “In cities where more bike lanes are being built and bicycling is the new smart car, all motorists should use extra discretion to care for ‘vehicles’ in bike lanes.”