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Bicycle Safety (cont.)

Characteristics of Accident Victims

  • Most bicycle injuries occur to boys aged 10-14 years.
  • Although safety education often focuses on children, older bicyclists must remember that a majority of bicycle deaths involve adults.
  • Men account for most bicycle deaths.
  • In analyzing who is at fault for a collision, officials found the bicyclist responsible in half the cases and the motorist responsible in about one-third. The remaining cases were attributed to both parties.
  • Younger cyclists who are not familiar with rules of the road are far more likely to cause and be involved in a serious accident. Some advocate that children younger than eight years of age should not be allowed to ride a bicycle on public roads.
  • Statistics from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reveal that most bicycle deaths occur from June through September, and between the hours of 6-9 p.m.
    • The risk of sustaining an injury in non-daylight conditions is four times greater than during daytime.
    • Nearly half of bicycle-motor vehicle crashes occurred at night or during low-light conditions when motorists had trouble seeing cyclists.
    • Bicycle deaths occur almost equally throughout the weekdays and weekends.
    • More bicyclists are killed in urban areas than rural areas.
    • Sixty percent of bicycle deaths in 2006 occurred on major roads
    • One-third of bicycle deaths occurred at intersections.
    • One-third of bicyclist fatalities occur on roads with speed limits of 55 mph or higher.
    • Typically, bicycle-motorist crashes occur within one mile of the bicyclist's home.

Overuse Injuries

Physical overuse can also cause bicycle injuries. These injuries can be prevented by proper selection of the bicycle, adjustment of the bicycle to the individual rider, proper maintenance, and common sense in how the bicycle is used.

  • Appropriately-sized frames, handlebar and seat heights as well as understanding of gear systems help reduce injuries.
  • Drinking enough fluids, stretching, and routine scheduled activity can help avoid potential injuries related to overuse.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/29/2014

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