augusta free press news

Top bicycle crash injuries to know about (and go to the ER for)

cyclist helmet bike
(© Maridav – stock.adobe.com)

According to studies on bicycle injuries, about 70% of the injuries occurred to men. An overwhelming percentage involves children aged 5 to 17, while about half the patients coming into E.R. involved limbs, contusions, abrasions, lacerations, face and head injuries, and more. Alcohol use and the absence of helmets were also contributing factors to these frightening statistics.

Everyone who rides a bike for fun, eco-friendly travel or sports faces many injuries risks, from inexperienced children riders to seasoned elder cyclists. In addition, most cyclists fall victim to car drivers, thus engaging in myriad subsequent health, monetary, and legal problems. Vulnerable and risking their physical integrity or life every day in the streets, cyclists need to know what they could face out there – medically and legally.

First things first, you should know that if someone injures you in a bike accident, your should seek immediate medical attention and contact a Columbia bicycle accident attorney to discuss your case. Even if you’re partly to blame for the accident, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Of course, let’s all hope it will not be your or your child’s case, but it’s better to be prepared.

Typical bicycle injuries

Bicycle injuries range from simple falls to serious collisions with motor vehicles. According to research, bicycle accidents sent about 2.2 million children to emergency rooms for treatment. The patient list included kids from the age of 5 to 17 aged6 and 2015. A 10-year study of bicycle injuries found that an average of 600 bike injuries happens each day.

  • Arm injuries made up 36% of the injuries, which made them the most common. Leg injuries followed closely at 25%
  • Both face and head/neck injuries comprised 15% of the total injuries.
  • Bruises and scrapes were treated in 29% of cases.
  • Traumatic brain injuries occurred in 11% of cases.

As you know, all these injuries generally have serious, life-threatening consequences, so wearing a helmet still proves to be the best strategy for preventing concussions or traumatic brain injuries.

That’s why parents should force the issue and ensure their kids always wear a helmet when riding. That’s regardless of whether your state has a helmet law or not.

Increased bike riders in response to closed public transportation

Parents can hardly prevent their kids from riding bicycles. It’s an important rite of passage, and bike exercise provides many health benefits. People of all ages ride bicycles, and bike ridership increased dramatically during the Cov-19 quarantine. Unfortunately, increased bike riding has a high price. In the U.K., pedestrians took to their bicycles in record numbers because public transportation was closed. Many people commuted to work on bikes, and bicycle ride-sharing programs flourished. The same occurrences were common in the United States and other countries.

However, the costs of this return to nature included remodeling downtown areas to make them more appealing to bike traffic. The result was an increase in accidents and legal debates sparking all over. Many injuries occurred because bike riders insisted on their rights, which offended many motorists. Moreover, adult bike riders often take greater risks, such as riding between cars in traffic jams, making problems for themselves, the cars, and the pedestrians.

The most serious accidents

One study found that 37.4 people per 100,000 received severe injuries from riding bikes. Recreational biking accounts for 51% of injuries. Competitive cyclists, however, take the trophy because 85% of mountain bikers sustain injuries each year. In addition, about 8% to 10% of BMX bicycle owners get injured while performing stunts, but these injuries don’t involve vehicle collisions.

The most serious accidents in biking almost always result from cars vs. bicycle accidents. Statistics show that speeding causes most bike accidents from the biker’s viewpoint. Off-road bikes have been selling well, but that often results in accidents when a biker crosses the road unexpectedly.

Bicycle accidents affect adults as well as children, although adults tend to ride more aggressively. That doesn’t mean that cyclists are 100% responsible for all the accidents all the time. Motorists need to yield to bicyclists regardless of right-of-way if humanly possible – but they don’t always follow the written or unwritten laws either.

What is clear is that bike accidents account for 23,000 hospital admissions, 900 deaths, and 580,000 emergency room visits each year. In addition, the financial costs run more than $8 billion annually.

Bottom line

In some counties and cities, the courts deal with numerous bicycle accident cases where fault, liability, and responsibility are heavily debated and contested. Moreover, the law is an ever-evolving creature, and new laws change policies and rules for cyclists frequently – sometimes for the better, but sometimes for the worst.

Legislators are now looking sharply into the specificities of riding bikes or scooters, as accidents seem to multiply each year, claiming more and more lives. In this framework, it is best to follow the (current) law to a tee, wear protection gear, ride responsibly, and have legal help at the ready.

 

Story by Kerry Tucker. Early in his journalism college years, Tucker had a revelation: there were not nearly enough law communicators. Peoples’ difficulties in understanding the law, procedures, and how the justice system worked stemmed from the fact that no one took the patience to explain complicated matters to them. Therefore, he took upon him the task of helping people navigate legal matters easier. He works with attorneys and other legal journalists, and spends time doing research so that everyone – from a mother whose child got a bike injury to a company needing insurance counsel – to find the actionable answers they are looking for.


augusta free press
augusta free press