Florida is a great place to ride a bike. With its year-round warm weather and plenty of scenic routes, it’s no wonder that cycling is such a popular activity in the state. However, riding a bike comes with certain risks, such as getting involved in a bicycle accident. This article will look at what causes so many bicycle accidents in Florida, what steps you can take when you are involved in a bike crash, and how hiring Florida bicycle accident attorney Jared Spingarn, P.A. can help you after the accident.
Florida Bicycle Accident Statistics
The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles records data on Florida bicycle accidents. The department’s annual crash report presents statistics on the total number of traffic crashes per year in the state. This report includes motor vehicle accidents and bike accidents. It also includes the causes of these crashes and the number of bicycle fatalities.
In 2020, there was a total of 341,399 traffic crashes in the state. Of this number, 5,952 were cycling accidents where Florida bicyclists were involved. This number was equivalent to approximately 1.7% of all accidents recorded in the state.
Out of the total number of bike accidents, Florida bicycle accident statistics recorded 759 incapacitating injuries from bike crashes. These injuries were described as serious injuries that needed immediate medical attention, such as broken bones, amputations, brain injuries, and other disabling personal injuries.
Furthermore, the crash report shows that 4,815 Florida cyclists sustained other injuries in a bicycle accident. These injuries to bike riders included scratches, bruises, and other surface wounds that did not need emergency medical care.
Florida Bicycle Deaths Statistics
The total number of bike crashes resulted in 169 bicyclists killed. Among the Florida cyclists involved in a fatal crash, 45 bicycle riders were found to have the presence of drugs, alcohol, or both when the accidents occurred.
Furthermore, 141 Florida bicyclists who died did not wear any protective gear such as a helmet or reflective equipment. However, 22 cyclists in a fatal bicycle accident wore a helmet, while nine bikers had lights installed on their bicycles.
Common Locations where Bicycle Accidents Occur
Florida is a huge state with a population of more than 20 million. Many bike crashes happen daily, resulting in bicycle injuries and fatal accidents. Miami-Dade County recorded the highest number of Florida bicycle accidents in 2020, with 757 bicycle crashes. Of this number, 15 were fatal crashes, while 696 resulted in injuries to cyclists. This county is where the famous city of Miami is located.
Broward County recorded the next-highest number of bike accidents with 602; 577 cyclists were injured in these crashes while six were killed. Broward County is home to Coral Springs and Hallandale Beach. The famous beaches of Fort Lauderdale can also be found in Broward County.
Pinellas County was third on the list, with 518 bicycle crashes, eight fatalities, and 494 injuries. Florida’s third-largest city, St. Petersburg, is located in this county. Next was Hillsborough, where the major city of Tampa is located. The county recorded 472 bicycle accidents, 14 fatalities, and 446 injured cyclists.
Fifth on the list is Palm Beach County, where the popular West Palm Beach can be found. The county recorded 373 accidents, with 12 cyclists killed and 348 injured. If you are residing in any of these counties and get into an accident, you should get a free consultation with bicycle accident attorneys at Jared Spingarn, P.A. Accident Attorneys.
Causes of a Florida Bicycle Accident
What are the most common causes of bicycle accidents? Now that you have seen the numbers, you must know what causes so many bicycle accidents in Florida.
A bicycle accident can lead to serious personal injury. Common causes of bicycle accidents include failure to yield, distracted driving, and negligent behavior of the vehicle driver. Lacking the correct protective gear on the part of the rider can also lead to a bicycle accident.
Failure to Yield
Failure to yield is one of the most common causes of a bike accident. Motorists and bicyclists sharing the same lane can result in a bike accident if they don’t follow the road rules.
Failure to yield can happen when a driver makes a turn without checking for other road users. It can also happen when a larger vehicle fails to yield at a stop sign or an intersection, causing it to bump into cyclists.
Careless driving is often described as crossing the road or swerving. A bike accident can occur when drivers are carelessly swerving through each lane. They can easily lose control of the vehicle, causing them to bump into other vehicles or cyclists.
Rear-ending is one of the common causes of a bike accident. This happens when the driver is not paying attention to the road and fails to leave a safe distance between his vehicle and the cars or cyclists in front. Rear-ending collisions can cause serious personal injury, and the impact can be fatal if the driver is driving too fast.
Errant turning is described as motorists failing to check their side mirrors before making a turn. It can also happen when drivers fail to yield at stop signs and carelessly make a turn without checking for oncoming cars or bicycles. Some drivers also miscalculate their turn, causing them to drive into the bike lane and hit the riders.
Dooring happens when drivers of a parked car carelessly open their car door without checking for pedestrians or bicycles. This type of accident occurs when drivers suddenly open the door to exit the vehicle, causing the biker to ride straight into the open door. This bike accident can happen on a side street or on narrow roads as drivers usually don’t check for oncoming traffic in these areas.
Bicycling accidents can also happen in a driveway. This type of bike accident can occur when a driver reverses the vehicle without checking if the road is clear. Some drivers do this absentmindedly as they assume it is safe to get out of their own driveway.
However, bicycle riders may not be able to hit their brakes immediately as cars suddenly exit their driveway. Many bicycle accidents occur because of this.
Poor Weather Conditions
Poor weather conditions can lead to a bicycle accident. When there are heavy rains or poor visibility, distracted drivers can easily hit a bicycle rider. This type of bike accident usually occurs at night. This is why cyclists are strongly advised to wear reflective clothing and install bike lights for safety.
In all of these cases, drunk driving can be the cause. Drunk drivers cannot react as quickly on the road. They can run a red light, disregard traffic signs, drive on bicycle lanes, and hit obstructions, including bicyclists. In case you are hit by a drunk driver, you should get a free consultation with the law firm of Jared Spingarn so that an experienced bicycle accident attorney can help you take legal action against the party at fault.
Common Bicycle Injuries
The most common bicycle injuries include fractures, soft tissue damage, back pain, neck pain, scratches, bruises, and head injuries. In severe cases, a cyclist can sustain a traumatic brain injury that can lead to paralysis and even death.
Although protective gear can help lessen the impact of a crash, a severe collision will still cause a serious injury. Aside from the physical injury that a biker can sustain, being involved in a bike crash can cause mental and emotional damage.
What should I do after a bike accident?
After a bike accident, you must first check for bodily injuries that you sustained and get the medical attention that you need. Then, you should call the law offices of Jared Spingarn for a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer to help you with the next steps. In Florida, personal injury protection (PIP) insurance coverage should cover your medical expenses and lost wages. To successfully file a claim, you will need to document all the information about the accident, such as the following:
- Date, time, and location of the accident
- How the accident occurred (per your recollection)
- Witness statements and/or police report
- Photographs or videos of the accident scene
- Photos of the injuries you sustained as well as the damage to your bike and equipment
Can I take legal action if I am hit by a motor vehicle?
Yes, you can take legal action for damages caused by accident. In this case, you can seek the help of Jared Spingarn, P.A., to file a personal injury claim.
In Florida, many communities have a bike safety plan that can help lessen the occurrence of bike accidents. However, government entities can still be held liable for the accident if it is proven that they failed to properly maintain the roads or bike paths where the accident occurred. In cases of wrongful death, the personal representative of the deceased can file a lawsuit against the driver at fault.
Your personal injury attorney from the Law Offices of Jared Spingarn, P.A. Accident Attorneys, can give you the best advice on how to proceed with legal action. A lawyer from the firm can provide you with a free case review of your accident if you want to sue the driver that hit you.
Contact Jared Spingarn, P.A. to Hire a Bicycle Accident Attorney after an Accident
What causes so many bicycle accidents in Florida? Many factors can contribute to a bicycle accident. The most common causes of bicycle accidents include distracted driving, errant turning, dooring, driveway collisions, weather conditions, and drunk driving.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a bicycle accident caused by another party’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. A bicycle accident attorney can help you understand your legal options and ensure that your rights are protected. By getting in touch with Jared Spingarn, you can get a free review of your case to get started with the legal process.
>> If you need a reliable bike accident attorney in Florida, reach out to Jared Spingarn, Accident Attorneys Florida Law Firm, at 1-954-781-2316 for a Free Case Review or drop a message on our Contact Us page.