Results published in the annual Texas Department of Transportation (TxDot) crash statistics show an alarming trend for bicycle safety, as 26% more bicyclists died in crashes in 2018 than the year before. With 72 bicyclist fatalities in total, Texas’ bicyclist fatality rate has reached an unprecedented high. And until the safety and government organization can determine what caused this sudden spike in fatalities, they’ll be hard-pressed to resolve the issue.
More puzzling is that there wasn’t a corresponding increase in the overall number of bicycle accidents. Total bike crashes were down from 2017. Texas had fewer bicycle crashes than previous years, but our state experienced significantly more bicyclist fatalities.
Keep reading to learn more about bicycle safety and what to do if you or a loved one has been the victim of a bicycle crash in Texas.
Risk Factors in Fatal Bike Crashes
According to research from the Centers for Disease Control and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are a few demographics, physical locations, and other factors that increase the risk of a fatal bike crash.
- 50 to 59-year-olds make up the largest age group of bicycle fatalities
- Males are 6 times more likely to die in a bike crash
- Urban areas are the most dangerous for bicycle fatalities
- Non-intersections pose more of a risk than intersections
- 37% of bicyclist fatalities involved alcohol use by either participant
- Fatalities occurred most often between 6 pm and 9 pm
“While it might be tempting to get your children a bike that’s a bit big for them to save money as they keep growing, this can make riding more difficult for them to control. Adults who are riding incorrectly sized bikes are also at risk.”
You can’t prevent every car-bike crash. However, we encourage cyclists to take the following steps.
1. Obey Traffic and Bicyclist Laws
One of the best ways to stay safe while riding (and strengthen your personal injury claim) is to understand and obey the laws that govern cyclists. Here are some legal regulations to keep in mind:
- Bicyclists are expected to follow the same rules as other road users. This includes obeying traffic control signs and lights.
- Some cities in Texas have mandatory helmet laws for minors.
- If on a road, bicyclists should ride on the right side as close to the curb as possible.
2. Make Yourself Visible and Noticeable When Riding a Bike
If you can, avoid riding your bike at night. If you have to ride at night, try to wear reflective clothing and attach lights to your bike. Additionally, wearing bright-colored clothing during the day will make you more noticeable to vehicles. Attaching a bell to your bike can also be useful for getting the attention of other cyclists, pedestrians, and even cars.
4. Communicate With Other Road Users
Signal your intentions to other bikes and motor vehicles on the road. This is typically done with hand motions. Verbal and non-verbal communication is essential for biking safely. Communication includes bells, calls like “on your left” when passing, and making eye contact with drivers before crossing at a crosswalk or making a turn.
5. Be Properly Fitted When Riding Your Bicycle
Wearing a bike helmet that fits you properly will maximize the likelihood that it can save you from a fatal head injury. But ensuring the proper fit of your equipment doesn’t end with your helmet. It’s also important that the bicycle is the correct size for the rider. While it might be tempting to get your children a bike that’s a bit big for them to save money as they keep growing, this can make riding more difficult for them to control. Adults who are riding incorrectly sized bikes are also at risk.
Crosley Law | Fighting for Texas Bicycle Accident Victims
At Crosley Law, we understand the dangers bicyclists face on Texas roadways, even when following all the necessary precautions.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of a bicycle crash, our experienced bicycle and motor vehicle accident attorneys might be able to help you get the compensation you deserve. We have experience in personal injury and wrongful death claims that deal with a full spectrum of motor vehicle accident scenarios, so please reach out today for help.
Bicycle safety. (15 June 2017). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Motor Vehicle Safety. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/bicycle/index.html
Bicycle safety. (20 June 2019). National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Retrieved from https://www.nhtsa.gov/road-safety/bicycle-safety
Creighton, P., & Olivier, J. (21 July 2016). Bicycle injuries and helmet use: a systematic review and meta-analysis. International Journal of Epidemiology, 46(1), 278–292. Retrieved from https://academic.oup.com/ije/article/46/1/278/2617198#78365578
Texas motor vehicle traffic crash facts calendar year 2018. (6 May 2019). Texas Department of Transportation. Retrieved from https://ftp.txdot.gov/pub/txdot-info/trf/crash_statistics/2018/01.pdf
The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.
Related ArticlesView All Blog Articles
11 Things You Need to Know About a Bicycle Accident Insurance Claim in San AntonioJul 23, 2022
Cycling is a great way to get some fresh air, exercise, and save on gas money. So it’s no surprise that bike commuting is increasing in popularity. But even with dedicated bike lanes and increased awareness of cyclists, motor vehicle accidents are still a serious concern. While San Antonio has made great strides in becoming […]
10 Things Every Rider Should Know About Motorcycle CrashesFeb 21, 2022
A motorcycle crash can happen in the blink of an eye yet change your life forever. This is something a growing number of riders are finding. Here in Texas, the number of registered motorcycles had doubled between 2000 and 2014. And Bexar County has one of the highest numbers of riders in the state. At […]
5 Common Bicycle Accident Injuries: How a San Antonio Bicycle Accident Lawyer Can HelpJan 31, 2022
As avid cyclists, the team at Crosley Law knows how satisfying—and dangerous—bicycles can be. While it’s always in your best interest to use protective equipment and follow all local ordinances, even careful cyclists can end up with serious injuries after bicycle accidents with cars, trucks, and commercial vehicles. Our San Antonio personal injury lawyers represent […]
Why Drivers Lack Motorcycle AwarenessSep 23, 2020
At-fault drivers love to blame motorcycle riders for car-bike accidents. “I was about to turn left,” they argue, “and that motorcycle came out of nowhere!” Bias against motorcyclists is real, and motorists sometimes try to shift blame to innocent riders when they were at fault for a crash. This tactic can complicate your personal injury […]
Why Does Bexar County Have So Many Fatal Bicycle Crashes?Aug 26, 2020
Our community loves bicycles. However, our cycling habits come with a dark side: Bexar County has more fatal bicycle accidents than almost anywhere else in Texas. In this article, our San Antonio bicycle accident attorneys discuss the unique factors that make our roads so dangerous for bicyclists and other vulnerable road users. San Antonio Has […]
San Antonio’s I-35: One of the Deadliest Highways in AmericaMay 07, 2020
In 2019, ValuePenguin studied the data from nearly 3,000 fatal motor vehicle accidents that occurred during Thanksgiving and Christmas from 2015–2018 to determine America’s deadliest roadways during the holidays. The results proved what we here in south Texas suspected all along: San Antonio’s I-35 is one of the top five highways in America for deadly […]
Texas Bicyclist Fatalities Up 26%: Protect Yourself With These 5 TipsNov 07, 2019
Results published in the annual Texas Department of Transportation (TxDot) crash statistics show an alarming trend for bicycle safety, as 26% more bicyclists died in crashes in 2018 than the year before. With 72 bicyclist fatalities in total, Texas’ bicyclist fatality rate has reached an unprecedented high. And until the safety and government organization can […]
4 Essential Facts About Texas Motorcycle LawsAug 13, 2019
At Crosley Law, we understand why bikers cherish the freedom that their motorcycles offer them. Compared to many states, Texas has relatively limited motorcycle safety laws. Sometimes, gaps in our laws lead to heart-breaking losses during a motorcycle crash. In this article, we’ll analyze Texas’s current motorcycle laws and outline ways that you can keep […]
Bicycle Traffic Laws: Who has the Right of Way?Apr 02, 2019
The Crosley Law team is passionate about cycling, and we love that our city is embracing bicycling as a sport and means of transportation. However, as San Antonio becomes increasingly bicycle-friendly, you’ve probably become a little confused about which traffic laws apply to San Antonio bicyclists. In 2017 alone, there were 2,687 reported car-bicycle crashes […]
Texas Leads the U.S. in Fatal Motorcycle Accidents: Protect YourselfOct 10, 2018
They say everything’s bigger in Texas, and that includes our love for motorcycles. In 2017 alone, state government statistics showed more than 386,938 bikes registered in Texas — the sixth-highest total in the country. But Texas also leads the way in a much less desirable metric: our state generally ranks either first or second in the […]
Do you or a family member
need legal advice?
Crosley Law Firm, PC is a professional corporation of trial lawyers focused on representing individuals and families who have suffered serious personal injuries or wrongful death.