Common Bike Accidents in Tampa Bay
Posted in Bike accidents on July 1, 2018
Tampa Bay is a notoriously dangerous area for bicyclists and pedestrians. In 2017, Tampa Bay maintained its status as one of the most deadly metro areas in Southern Florida for vulnerable road users, with more than 100 pedestrian deaths and 22 bicyclist deaths. In 2016, Smart Growth America found the seven most dangerous metropolitan areas for walking in the U.S. were all in Florida. Tampa Bay came in at number seven. Learning the statistics, facts, and data about bicycle accidents in the Tampa Bay area may help you avoid accidents and injuries. If you or a loved one have been injured in a bike accident, the Tampa bike accident lawyers at Williams Law, P.A. can help you with your case.
Where Do Most Bicycle Accidents Happen?
A bicycle accident can happen anywhere in Tampa Bay, but there are certain roads and intersections that record higher numbers of these collisions than others. Knowing where the most crashes occur might be able to help you stay safer when biking in Tampa Bay. Left-hand turn accidents at intersections are some of the most common for bicyclists. Some of the deadliest intersections in the area, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, are as follows:
- Palm River Road and 78th Street South
- Anderson Road and Waters Avenue West
- Habana Avenue North and Sligh Avenue West
- 301 Highway South and Big Bend Road
- 301 Highway South and Bloomingdale Avenue
- Dale Mabry Highway North and Waters Avenue West
- Sheldon Road and Hillsborough Avenue West
- Bruce B. Downs Boulevard and Bearss Avenue East
All of these intersections saw between 11 and 14 accidents in one month alone. If you find yourself at a busy or dangerous intersection as a bicyclist, look both ways before crossing the street. Obey roadway rules, including traffic signs and signals. Don’t assume drivers at the intersection are going to yield the right-of-way. Be as careful as you can when crossing through any intersection in Hillsborough County.
Common Causes of Tampa Bay Bike Accidents
Drivers failing to yield the right-of-way at intersections and breaking other roadway rules are major contributing factors to Tampa Bay bicycle accidents. The vast majority of bike crashes are preventable with due care and attention on the part of vehicle drivers. When drivers cause bike crashes and injuries through negligence, they may be liable for the victim’s damages. Some of the most common acts of driver negligence involved in bicycle collisions include:
- Distracted driving
- Texting and driving
- Driving under the influence
- Ignoring stop signs or lights
- Reckless or aggressive driving
- Following too closely
Bicycles are vehicles in the eyes of Florida law. That gives them the right to be on the roads, bicycle paths, and sidewalks in some areas. Motorists owe a duty to bicyclists to treat them with due care and respect, leaving them plenty of room to maneuver. It is when drivers ignore the rules, get frustrated with bicyclists, or break the law that preventable collisions happen.
Did Something Other Than a Driver Cause Your Bike Accident?
Tampa Bay’s roads expose bicyclists to more dangers than just bad drivers. Negligent roadway maintenance can make for hazards such as gaps and cracks in the sidewalks, crowded corridors, loose gravel, potholes, debris in bike lanes, or lack of safe bicycle routes. It is up to city planners and maintenance crews to ensure the reasonable safety of roads through regular maintenance, repairs, and upgrades. Failure to do so, resulting in a bicycle accident, could end in a claim.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries while riding a bicycle in Tampa Bay, review your rights and legal options with a local personal injury attorney. It may be within your rights to file a personal injury claim against the negligent driver, the city, another party, or your own insurance company. Even as the victim of a hit-and-run bicycle accident, you have potential compensation opportunities. Contact a lawyer today for more information.