Cycling is an eco-friendly way to navigate the city, as well as a great form of exercise. Many citizens in Albuquerque use a bicycle as their main way to get to and from work or run errands, or some choose to ride their bike for recreational reasons. Whenever people are on their bikes, however, there is a risk of an accident occurring. Typically, when a driver fails to act responsibly, they can cause devastating injuries to cyclists. If you’ve been injured, you may be overwhelmed with how you’re going to recover, afford treatment, and how soon you’re going to get back to work. The Albuquerque bicycle accident lawyers at Buckingham Barrera Law Firm will fight for you to recover the losses of the accident.
Bicycle Accidents in Albuquerque
According to the Albuquerque Journal, New Mexico had the second-highest number of cyclist deaths per capita in the U.S. between 2010-2012, which was 50% higher than the national rate. Between 2009 and 2013, 36 cyclists died in New Mexico. 2013 also showed the following data:
- 89 New Mexico cyclists hospitalized
- 1,684 New Mexico cyclists treated for injuries
Albuquerque is still seeing its fair share of accidents. Recently, a cyclist was struck by a car on Louisiana near Comanche. This accident happened around 8 a.m. in the morning. The cyclist died at the scene.
There are many factors that can cause bicycle accidents. Let’s take a look at what some of those factors can be.
How Do Bicycle Accidents Happen?
Cyclists often have to share the road with drivers as there may not always be a bicycle lane to ride in. When they’re on the road with drivers, everyone needs to be paying full attention. Unfortunately, negligence can lead to accidents.
- Distracted Driving. Cell phones are one of the main distractions that keep a driver’s eyes from the road. They could be texting, checking social media, or using a navigation app. Other distractions include trying to eat or completing another task—all which put the driver at risk of colliding with anyone near them.
- Inexperienced. New drivers may be getting used to sharing the road with other cars, but they may not know how to handle cyclists. Passing cyclists can be a challenge for someone who is new behind the wheel. They may not be used to gauging how far their car is compared to the cyclist. If they misjudge, they could hit the cyclist’s rear wheel and possibly knock them off balance, or sideswipe the cyclist as they’re passing.
- Not Expecting Cyclists. To drivers, cyclists are much smaller and can be more difficult to spot. When a driver is making a turn or changing lanes, they may look for other vehicles, but not cyclists. Intersections are common places for this kind of situation to occur. A driver may be making a left-hand turn and check the lane for oncoming traffic, but not for cyclists. This can result in the car making the turn and colliding with the cyclist.
No matter the reason how your accident happened, our lawyers will fight for you to get a fair settlement. Often, a cyclist may have injuries that require intense medical care. Let’s look into how cyclists face more dangers than those in cars.
Why Are Bicycle Accidents Severe?
Cyclists often have terrible injuries after a wreck because they have next to nothing to absorb the impact of the crash. Unfortunately, this means their body will likely bear the brunt of the impact.
Gear like helmets, thick clothing, and gloves do add some protection. However, when a cyclist is struck, they will likely lose balance and fall off their bike. As they fall, they can hit other objects before hitting the ground. Head injuries, bone injuries, and severe cuts and scrapes can occur.
These injuries can take a long time to heal, which can mean hospital stays as well as taking weeks or months to recover at home. If you’re missing work, being able to afford this care may be worrisome—but that’s where we come in. Your injuries weren’t your fault and pursuing legal action can bring you the financial peace of mind you need so you can recover without worrying about how you’re going to pay other bills and put food on the table.
How Can Cyclists Be Safer in Albuquerque?
Cyclists should always be wary of other drivers on the road and what they can do to make themselves more visible and protected. To stay safer on the road, follow these Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tips:
- Wear a Helmet. A helmet could protect you from sustaining a traumatic brain injury.
- Wear Reflective Clothing. Because a cyclist’s size already gives them a visibility disadvantage, they can make up for it with their clothing. Cyclists who wear bright reflective clothing could catch a driver’s eye and stand out in the road.
- Put Active Lighting on Your Bike. If you add lights to the front and rear of your bike, it can inform other drivers of your presence as well as help your with visibility. Cyclists riding at night also run the risk of hitting potholes, running over debris like branches or other obstacles in the road, and experiencing unexpected surfaces changes like when a road transitions from pavement to gravel.
Your safety precautions can reduce the chances of getting into a bicycle wreck and may even help reduce the severity of injuries if you’re involved in one. However, a driver’s negligence is something out of your control. They should be held accountable for their actions when their negligence harms you.
Buckingham Barrera Law Firm Helps New Mexico Cyclists
Protecting the rights of the people in New Mexico is what our firm prides itself on. Our lawyers diligently stay up to date on the law and will know which ones apply to your case and how they may affect it. We consult with experts when investigating your case to gather evidence to strengthen your claim as much as possible. An injury shouldn’t prevent you from moving forward with your future. Give our office a call today.