With all of these accidents involving cars and bicycles on the road, like the one in front of Crossroads mall and the one in Princeton, we took a closer look at how cyclists can stay safe. Biking has many benefits but riders need to take extra precautions when sharing the road with cars. Crashes between a bicycle and a car can prove to be fatal for some cyclists. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, bicyclists accounted for 2.2 percent of traffic deaths in 2016.
“One thing that cyclists need to remember is to obey the rules of the road. They’re basically a vehicle on the roadway, so they need to make sure they’re following stop signs, red lights, stay on the right side of the road, ” Jamie Wilhite, Beckley Police Sergeant, said.
Bicyclist’s fatal accidents are most likely to happen between 6 and 9 p.m. One thing that cyclists should do to be visible at any time of day to drivers is to wear reflective clothing. A large percentage of crashes could be avoided if cyclists and motorists follow the rules of the road and watched out for each other.
“It’s a give and take on both sides. You know, I’ve been in that same experience with bikers myself. Coming to work one morning about 5 years ago, I knew the bikers on the road and I’m a biker enthusiast myself, so I tried to go around them guys, slow and stay on the center line, and let traffic come the other way. And when I got up to the spotlight, they pulled up to me and wanted to give me a little business over that I got too close to them, ” Mark Hitchcock, Owner of Elevation Sports, told us.
“Pay attention first and foremost. Don’t be distracted, give them a little bit of space. And make sure you’re aware of what they are doing cause you don’t want them darting out in front of you and striking the cyclist, ” Sergeant Jamie Wilhite added.