Bicycling accidents often happen from a lack of protective equipment or driver error. Even minor mistakes can lead to life-changing injuries or even fatalities. Our bicycle accident lawyers are here to help you navigate life after a bicycle injury. Call Oronoz & Ericsson, LLC today at (702) 878-2889 to receive the compassionate care that you deserve.
While not all bicycle injuries can be prevented, there are a few precautions that you can take to enjoy safer biking in the Las Vegas, Nevada area.
1. Always Wear Protective Gear
Protective gear might not prevent you from being in a bicycle accident, but it could save your life if you are in one. A well-fitted helmet is important to protect you from traumatic brain injuries. Other protective gear, like knee and elbow pads, can help you protect your bones if you do fall. Other items, like reflective lights, can help drivers see you in the dark.
2. Be Aware of Local Laws
Most states, including Nevada, have laws that govern bicycles, which includes bicyclist rights and rules of the road. The state of Nevada permits bicyclists to cycle on the same roads as motor vehicles, but this also means that they are expected to follow the same local laws. For example, Nevada requires bicyclists to ride as close to the right side of the road as possible. Bicyclists can pass other vehicles but must do so in a safe manner.
3. Ride With Traffic, Not Against It
Riding with traffic, instead of against it, makes the logistics of sharing the road easier. If you ride against traffic, it can make things like right-hands turns dangerous. It can also be confusing to drivers on the road who are not familiar with looking for pedestrians or bicyclists in oncoming traffic.
4. Create a Plan When Bicycling in Groups
While bicycling in a larger group can make it easier for drivers to notice you, it can present a few challenges. Larger groups may find it more difficult to make left-hand turns. They are also more likely to block traffic. If you plan to ride with a large group, discuss how you will handle turns and traffic before hitting the road.
5. Know the Fundamentals- Use Hand Signals
Bicyclists might not have the same tools, including turn signals and horns, to communicate with other drivers. But that does not mean that you can’t inform drivers of your plans. You can signal to drivers, letting them know of your plans to turn, using recognizable hand signals. Hold out your left arm when turning left, and vice versa.
6. Avoid Rush Hour Traffic
Certain times of the day can be more dangerous, including during rush hour traffic. Drivers may be stuck in bumper to bumper road conditions and it can be more difficult to identify bicyclists within the traffic.
7. Maintain Equipment
Bicycle accidents can also occur from faulty equipment. If you plan to bicycle on busy roads or for long distances, it is a good idea to keep up with maintenance. Ensure that your tires are properly inflated and if possible, always carry a repair kit with you.
8. Learn to Recognize Hazards and Bad Road Conditions
Bicycle accidents also occur from slippery roads and potholes. Always be on the lookout for road hazards and if possible, avoid them. If you can’t avoid them, then reduce your speed.
9. Be Aware at All Times
Being vigilant of your surroundings is one of the best ways to practice safe bicycling. Vehicle drivers will not always see you and even if it is their duty to share the road with you, you are more likely to experience life-changing injuries if you are involved in an accident. It is also important to remain aware, even when bicycling by parked cars. “Dooring” is a common injury, in which drivers leave their doors open, blocking the road for bicyclists.
10. Use Bike Paths When Available
Bike paths can be a safer alternative when they are available. If you enjoy bicycling for recreational purposes, there are many cycling paths in Las Vegas.
Know Your Rights When Injured in a Bicycle
Nevada requires motor vehicle drivers and bicyclists to share the road. If you are injured in an accident, then you have the same rights as if you were driving a vehicle. Oronoz & Ericsson Injury Lawyers understands how life-changing a bicycle accident is. Reach out to a bicycle accident lawyer today at (702) 878-2889 to learn more about your compensation eligibility.