Many Indiana residents enjoy riding bicycles for transportation and exercise. It’s a cheap, easy way to get around and get in your cardio. Unfortunately, when accidents happen, riders can suffer serious injuries. These are some statistics about such incidents and how to avoid them.
Bicycle accident statistics
Although bicycles make up only around 1% of all vehicles on the roads, cyclists comprise more than 2% of fatalities in accidents. This equates to approximately 1,000 deaths nationwide. Meanwhile, bicycle accidents also lead to 130,000 injuries each year across the country.
Adults aged 55 to 69 are the most likely to be killed in bicycle accidents. Younger riders ranging from adolescence to young adulthood are most likely to suffer injuries in the emergency room; those between the ages of 10 and 24 account for around one-third of all bicycle accident injuries. Males have a higher rate of dying from such accidents compared with females.
Most bicycle accidents occur in areas without intersections where motor vehicles travel at higher speeds, which is a major contributor to cyclist fatalities. Nearly one-third of these accidents are due to alcohol intoxication. The majority of bicycle accidents occur in urban areas.
Preventing bicycle accidents
Not all bicycle accidents can be prevented as you can’t control what drivers do. However, wearing a helmet is one of the best ways to protect yourself and prevent severe head or brain injuries. Remaining visible at all times is crucial as well. You can ensure that drivers are able to see you even in the dark by wearing brightly-colored clothing and reflectors on your clothes and bike.
Using common sense while on your bicycle can make you a better, safer rider. Always follow the rules of the road, obey all traffic signs and signals and use designated bike lanes wherever available.