YUMA, Arizona. According to Vox , no one in the U.S. has died in a bike sharing accident. Given the prevalence of bike sharing in cities across the United States, this fact is fascinating. Vox reports that 35 million bike share trips have been taken since programs began. When you compare the 0 deaths in bike sharing with the roughly 21 bike deaths per 100 million bike trips, one has to wonder why bike sharing is safer than regular biking.
So, what makes bike sharing safer than regular biking? Researchers looked into it and found that the design of bikes used for sharing are safer than typical bikes. The bikes have sturdier tires and frames. While this makes the bike heavier, it makes it more able to handle bumps in the road. The bike’s heaviness and lack of gears also makes it harder to users to go fast. After all, speed is a contributing factor in injury severity in accidents of all kinds. The U.S. Department of Transportation report also found that bike sharing bikes tend to be painted bright colors and be equipped with proper lighting, allowing them to be more visible to cars.
Bike riders who use bike shares may not be experienced riders. Experienced riders may go faster and may take more risks, while individuals using bike shares may be more cautious and conservative.
The location where the bike sharing stations are found also makes a difference. Locations tend to be in areas where the traffic moves more slowly or where there are already bike lanes present. In fact, in many bike share areas, drivers are not permitted to exceed 30 miles per hour. Researchers have shown that the number of pedestrian and bike death decreases when drivers move more slowly.
Additionally, more bikes on the road may make for safer biking. Where bike sharing stations are present, there may be more bikers on the road. There has been some initial research to show that there may be safety in numbers when it comes to bikes sharing the road with cars. Drivers may actually be more careful if they see more bikers on the road.
While the report suggests that bike sharing may have lower injury rates, the report is careful to say that riders using bike sharing services may not be protected, if they don’t use a helmet.
So, what can we take away from the study about bike safety and injury prevention? For one, get the right equipment for use on the road. Brighter color bikes, proper lighting, and less might be more when riding in city traffic. Next, consider your own choices when biking. Follow the rules of the road and inhabit a beginner’s mind. Finally, think about where you are choosing to bike. Busier roads will be dangerous. Either fight to have bike lanes put in by the city, or limit your biking to safe areas of the city where there are bike lanes and traffic calming methods in place.
Bike safety is everyone’s responsibility. Unfortunately, when a driver makes a mistake, the person most likely to suffer is the bike rider. If you or a loved one were hurt in a bike accident in Yuma, Arizona, reach out to Schneider & Onofry, P.C. personal injury lawyers near you. Our firm may be able to help you seek compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Visit us at https://www.soarizonalaw.com/ to learn more.
Schneider & Onofry, P.C. 207 W. 2nd St. Yuma, AZ 85364