Cycle accidents resulting in personal injury on the rise across the UK
The number of cyclists using the UK’s roads has been increasing steadily over the past few years. That number has now reached 13 million, which represents an increase of over 110% since 2000. This can be accredited to two substantial factors: the continued rising cost of driving, and the ongoing boom within the cycle industry due to the success of the UK’s cycle team during the London 2012 Olympics and Bradley Wiggins’s success at the Tour de France 2012.
Recently, the National Accident Helpline reported that the number of cyclists contacting personal injury specialists after an accident increased by 110% between 2007 and 2012. The Department for Transport (DFT) has also reported that the number of cyclists killed on the UK’s roads rose from 107 in 2011 to 118 in 2012, with 3,222 serious injuries also reported.
As the Tour de France started again last Saturday, now is the perfect time to remind you of the importance of staying safe while on your bike and remind you that if you’ve had an accident you may be entitled to compensation.
Help yourself and others avoid personal injuries
While we’re always happy to take on any personal injury case we hope you’ll never need us, we believe prevention is better than cure, so while you’re out on your bike make sure you take all necessary precautions to avoid accidents and injury. To avoid injury:
- Always wear a helmet – This is the most important accessory for any cyclist and can save your life.
- Wear reflective clothing- This will help motorists see you when visibility is reduced.
- Use cycle lanes where possible – They’re not there to add colour to the roads but rather to give you a safe and personal space to ride.
- Don’t cycle through red lights – Not only is it illegal but it’s extremely dangerous and annoys other road users.
- Try not to weave in and out of traffic, especially during rush hours.
- Always make sure you indicate to let motorists know where you’re planning on going.
- Take extra special care when cycling alongside or passing large vehicles, they may not be able to see you.
A lot of motorists feel that cyclists shouldn’t be on the roads, but drivers should remember that car tax is not charged for the maintenance of the roads but because of a car’s CO2 emissions. The money for road maintenance comes from Council Taxes, meaning cyclists have the same right to use the roads as other motorists. It’s worrying to hear what some motorists believe, none more so than an infamous twitter user who tweeted: “Definitely knocked a cyclist off his bike earlier – I have right of way he -doesn’t even pay road tax! #bloodycyclist" on Twitter.
We understand that the ever growing number of cyclists and motorists on the UK’s roads means accidents are harder to avoid. If you’ve been injured as a result of a road traffic accident you may be entitled to compensation. We’ve handled numerous claims and understand that cyclists who’ve suffered a personal injury aren’t always involved in a road traffic accident. Cyclists can also suffer a personal injury due to potholes on roads that have been poorly maintained.
If you’ve suffered a personal injury while on your bike please contact us on 01495 303124 or fill out our online claim form. We are based in Ebbw Vale, so if you live in the area you can also pop into our offices and speak with us directly!