As I was recently driving around Memphis I could not help but notice all of the newly painted pedestrian crosswalks and newly designated bike lanes. As seen on this Memphis Bike Map, we have growing and substantial designated areas to ride bikes in the Mid South.
With the enjoyment and convenience of these bike lanes comes an increase in safety issues among bicyclists and drivers alike. Combined with the decrease in daylight hours this time of year these dangers are even more pronounced. As enjoyable as riding a bicycle can be, riders are subject to the dangers of sharing the road with drivers who are not always watching out for them.
Tennessee Bicycling Laws and Injuries
According to the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration), in 2013, 743 bicyclists died and 48,000 were injured in accidents. Even with the increase in designated bike lanes, safety is never guaranteed for riders and drivers alike.
The Tennessee Department of Transportation has an extensive listing of bicycle related laws, including rules of the road and penalties associated with violating these laws.
Statistics show that both injuries and fatalities in bicycle crashes are on the rise. This can be attributed to drivers not paying attention to their surroundings or negligent operation of their automobile around bike lanes. On the other hand, we have also seen bicyclists who were at fault in striking another pedestrian or automobile while negligently crossing the street or riding in an area not designated for bicyclists.
Tips for Bicycle Safety
To ensure your safety, and the safety of others, we recommend the following:
- Be aware of your surroundings, always trying to stay in the designated bike lanes.
- Always use a bicycle light, even in the early morning hours. Such lights can be life savers by alerting other drivers of your presence.
- Always wear appropriate safety equipment.
- Always think ahead, trying to anticipate the actions of other drivers and pedestrians. Being on a bicycle leaves you prone to serious injury if an accident occurs, therefore it is important to use all of your senses to help avoid such devastating situations.
- Read more at Bicyclesafe.com for tips on riding in traffic.
Bicycle accidents can be more devastating than car or truck accidents, with more extensive injuries and damages. Every year bicycle crashes cause death, brain, head, neck, spinal cord, shoulder, knee and other injuries to tens of thousands of people. Many times a rider is seriously injured because a car or truck driver does not take the time to look for the bicyclists, and is usually travelling at a high rate of speed at impact.
Your Memphis Attorneys
When we work on your case, we employ professionals that have experience beyond the field of the law. Because we want the best outcome possible, our firm also works with professionals in the fields of forensic engineers, accident re-constructionists, vocational rehabilitation counselors, economists, and toxicologists. In addition to this, our firm also helps our clients by urging them to consult with physician specialists that have extensive knowledge in personal injuries.
If you or a loved one was involved in a bicycle, pedestrian or auto accident contact us online or call 901-526-9494 for a free, confidential case evaluation. We will thoroughly investigate your case to provide you with the answers you deserve and the representation you need.
The Chiozza Law Firm is a local Memphis law firm, proudly representing the people of Memphis for over 30 years, handling all types of claims, including pedestrian and bicyclist injuries.
Visit Your901Law.com for answers to all of your legal questions and to discuss your matter with a Memphis Attorney you can trust.