Bicycle AccidentsHow Can I Avoid a Bicycle Accident in Austin?

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Now that spring has arrived, people are beginning to enjoy the Austin weather from the comfort of their bicycle seats. Austin is home to a large number of cyclists, and city officials are continuing to improve the area to make it more bike friendly. However, the Austin Police Department reported that an average of 300 bike crashes occur every year. Many of these accidents result in significant injuries, and some cyclists even become victims of fatal bike accidents. For tips on what you can do to help prevent these serious crashes, here are some tips for both cyclists and drivers on how to avoid collisions.

What Can Drivers Do to Avoid Crashing into Bicyclists?

For drivers, just being aware and cautious around bicycles will minimize your chances of colliding with cyclists. Drivers often fail to notice bikes because they are smaller than other vehicles on the road and can be more difficult to spot.

Look out for cyclists when exiting a parking lot onto a street and when turning at intersections, since crashes commonly occur in these situations. Be especially alert if you see a bike lane, since this may indicate that bike traffic is more prevalent in this area.

Finally, always give cyclists enough space when you pass them. You should provide at least three feet of space between your vehicle and the cyclist when possible.

What Can Cyclists Do to Avoid Collisions?

Although drivers are often at fault for car and bicycle accidents occurring, some precautionary measures bicyclists should keep in mind when they suspect that nearby motorists may be acting negligently include:

  • Do not be afraid to take the lane – Bicyclists “take the lane” when they exit the shoulder or bike lane and merge with traffic. When you are in a lane, you have to keep up with traffic, but you are also more noticeable.
  • Use hand signals when you turn – Point with your left or right arm to signal when you are turning. This makes your actions more predictable, and the movement may cause some drivers to notice you.
  • Use lights and a mirror – Buy headlights to mount onto your handlebar as well as rear lights for your bike so other motorists may notice you more easily. You can also install bike mirrors to observe traffic behind you.
  • Plan your route ahead of time – Many areas in Austin have bicycle lanes, including the recently added lanes on Far West Boulevard. The city also features a “cycle track” on “The Drag” of Guadalupe Street. Cycle tracks use curbs, the landscape, parked cars or other barriers to buffer cyclists from traffic.

I Need a Lawyer in Austin Who Handles Bike Accident Cases

Our personal injury law firm has represented injury victims in Texas since 1978. Our Austin injury law firm has been committed to aggressively pursuing compensation for those dealing with the devastating effects of bike crashes and other situations involving injury or wrongful death. We are always ready to talk with victims and their families to give free attorney advice about their best legal options. Call us today to receive a case review from an experienced Austin injury attorney.

The Law Offices of Aaron Allison