Riding your bicycle should be fun, safe, and void of any personal injury – but in today’s often dangerous world, bicyclists must also be informed. As San Diego’s safety ambassador, I’m urging the public to take note of the following bike-related incidents – a local accident and a helmet recall – and take action to avoid needless injury or even death.
In recent events, you may have heard about the bicycle accident on Route 56 in Rancho Penasquitos. The accident caused an unfortunate death and serious injury to two bicyclists traveling on the bike path. The accident occurred when an out-of-control SUV swerved into the bike path for reasons yet to be determined, colliding with the bicyclists and thereby causing grave injury and death.
The driver of the SUV, a Ford Escape, did not sustain any injury.
During that week, the public was simultaneously alerted by the Associated Press last Thursday of a helmet recall. Bell recalled their helmets sold at Wal-Mart and Amazon.com. The plastic straps of these helmets may break off if an accident occurs, contributing to further injury.
Bicycle Safety Advice for San Diego Residents
In wake of the bicycle accident in Rancho Penasquitos and the recent helmet recall, it’s never been more important to ride carefully and share our bike safety advice with your loved ones. I urge the San Diego community to peruse the following bike safety tips to ensure you stay safe.
- Check for bike recalls
For the most recent information on the Bell helmet recall, and corresponding style numbers, call or log onto:
Customer recall phone number: 866-892-6059
Also – know that many other types of bicycle parts may be under recall. It’s important to keep up on potential hazards due to recalls – do so by creating an alert on http://www.recalls.gov indicating certain keywords that matter to you, such as bike or accessory brands and model numbers. You can be alerted anytime a recall is issued for your criteria.
- Ride in protected areas
While no accident can be completed avoided, try to ride in areas away from traffic and potential hazards. The problem with the Route 56 bike path is the lack of a reinforced barrier between the freeway and the bicyclists. All that separates a veering vehicle and a bike rider is a flimsy chain-link fence. As seen in the recent accident, a vehicle traveling at 65 MPH can easily tear down the fence, causing danger to the unsuspecting bicyclists. Consider bike paths that offer secluded trails – check Red Routes San Diego for updated bike trails that may be safer than Route 56 or open roads.
- Wear the correct safety equipment at all times
In addition to being aware of current sports equipment recalls, be equipped with the right safety gear to prevent needless injury. For instance, never take to the bike path without helmets and reflectors. Take it a step further with reflective clothing, a bike horn, and knee/wrist/elbow pads. Don’t risk the injury. In the event of an accident, you’ll be glad you wore the extra gear.
- Know the law, be aware of your rights as a bicyclist, and the right of drivers around you
Brush up on the safety laws surrounding bicycle riding on public streets. Ask yourself: Do you know which side of the road is the right side to ride on? Are you aware of current hand signals to indicate turns? Do you know the laws surrounding night riding? If you’re not sure of the answer for any of these questions, take a bike safety course. The San Diego Bicycle Coalition is a good source for regularly-occurring bicycle safety courses.
About the Law Offices of Michael Pines
Michael Pines has helped those injured in San Diego bicycle accidents seek appropriate recovery. People turn to the Law Offices of Michael Pines when faced with an insurance claims process. Often, insurance companies will rush injured people into accepting a settlement in hopes to quickly drop the case. Michael Pines helps injured people seek fair recovery unlike the insurance company. For a free legal evaluation of your case, call 1-800-655-6585 or contact us online.