Originally written for publishing on March 5, 2013.
More and more people riding bikes are hit by cars every day. There are numerous injuries due to this type of accident. Several are never reported to the police due to a absence of serious injury, and the reported accidents still account up to almost 800 a year, according to the Bike Safety Almanac.
Many different aspects explain why these collisions happen, from people looking at phones and iPods while driving to people not checking for pedestrians crossing the street. People should be more cautious about cars before crossing the street, as well. Oblivion to this makes a greater chance of unexpected events. Allison Murray, a student at Cal State University of Fullerton, shared her experience with bike and car accidents.
“I know one person who was killed from being hit by a car while on his bike, and I know another person who was severely injured from the same type of accident,” Murray said.
Knowing one person injured by a car is too many. Cars are large machines made of steel. When getting into the car each day, people need to pay full attention to their surroundings because they are controlling such large machinery.
Bicycleuniverse.com recorded that one of the leading causes of death, to humans from the ages of six to almost thirty, is by collisions with cars. It seems that many people are careless when crossing the street or while driving. The act of looking both ways is more important than lots of people perceive it. Michael Pines from seriousaccidents.com shared a number of reasons for car accidents. The main causes are: distracted driving, tailgating, speeding, foggy/icy weather, and running red lights.
“Distracted drivers are the top cause of car accidents in the U.S. today,” Pines said.
At Fullerton College, many sutdents are riding their bikes to and from school. There are bunches of students around, and sometimes they seem to come out of nowhere. These accidents can be easily prevented if people would pay more attention to their driving, rather than focusing on other things while behind the wheel. Here are some tips to being a better driver:
- Put your phones away. Although cell phones have become a normal part of daily life, the need for them (in most cases) are less urgent than people treat them.
- Stop at stop lights and stop signs. Bicyclists are usually moving at a slower pace than cars, and have a lesser advantage of knowing when a car is coming.
- For bicyclists, make eye contact with the driver in front of you before crossing in front of them. The car may be stopped, but that does not mean the driver sees the bicyclist.
- Do not speed. Whatever the situation may be, there are very few things that are more important than someone else’s life, or even yours. People often believe they have full control of the situation when they are the driver; however, sometimes things like unexpected stop signs show up.
In general, it is just better to be aware at all times, especially at night. Often times, people are unseen at night because of the darkness and the color the person is wearing. Hitting someone with a car is life threatening and will only cause more stress to every person’s life who is involved.
Beside the health aspect of everything, most students are already short of money. There is high doubt that many of them have the money to deal with medical finances and missing classes. Prevent hitting bicyclists and prevent being hit by cars. Be more aware.