Bicycle riders in Manassas know they must be careful when riding near motorized traffic. Nevertheless, riding in Virginia has gotten very dangerous in 2023.
According to the state Department of Motor Vehicles, by the end of May, nine bikers were killed and 156 injured in a total of 160 bicycle accidents. With “only” four deaths last year at the same time of year, Virginia has seen a 125 percent in fatalities in collisions between cars and bicycles year-over-year.
Protecting yourself from negligent Virginia drivers
Without knowing the details of any of these tragic incidents, it is likely that at least some of them were the result of driver negligence. Motorists who change lanes or turn without signaling or looking out for bicyclists are at high risk of running into one. So are speeders, distracted drivers and drunk drivers. There is nothing you can do to stop a dangerous driver from being on the same road you are riding on, but you can help reduce the risk of injury to yourself by doing the following:
- Wear a properly-fitting helmet and equipment that makes you more visible to motorists
- Check your equipment before starting your ride
- Stay with auto traffic, not against it
- Follow traffic signs, signals and lane markings
But as we said, these tips only reduce the risk of serious injury in a bike accident. Even experienced riders cannot always avoid getting hit by a reckless driver. The injuries are often severe, and the implications for your life profound. You could be unable to work, support yourself and your kids, or enjoy the activities and hobbies you did before your accident. A bad driver who caused your injuries should be the one to pay your medical bills, lost wages and more damages.