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How many cyclists are hit by cars?

Every time you take your bike out for a ride around Manassas, you feel like drivers just won't give you any space. You're always about six inches from being hit -- or, at least, that's how it seems.

So, how often are cyclists actually hit by cars? The injury and fatality statistics are telling.

The numbers are holding fairly steady. In 2006, a total of 772 cyclists were killed when they were hit by cars. In 2015, the total was 818. That's an increase of six percent, though the population also increased during that time.

Injury statistics also rose, but not that much. In 2006, reports estimate that 44,000 cyclists were hurt in accidents. In 2015, the total was 45,000. That increase is a mere 2.3 percent.

The cost of all of those accidents is incredible. Estimates put it at $4 billion annually.

Now, you may be wondering if you're at a high risk. Part of it depends on your age. In 1988, the average age of a cyclist at the time of a deadly crash was 24. In 1998, it rose to 32. In 2004, it hit 39. In 2014, it reached 45.

Your gender may also play a role. Some statistics indicate that a full 88 percent of those who passed away were male, with just 12 percent were female.

As you can see, your worries about the cars around you aren't unfounded. These accidents happen frequently. If you're hit and injured by a negligent driver while out for a ride, be sure you know all of your legal options to seek compensation.

Source: Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, "Pedestrian and Bicyclist Crash Statistics," accessed Aug. 31, 2017

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