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Personal Injury Lawyers
Philadelphia and Bucks County

Bicycle Accident In Philadelphia Reminds Drivers to Safely Share the Road

27
Nov 2013
By:

In late October, a bicycle accident occurred in Philadelphia along Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. A 52-year-old bike rider was hit by a car and sustained serious injuries necessitating transport to the hospital. The bike crash was one of many that happen in the city each year, but attracted attention because Mayor Nutter was alerted to the accident by an aide who saw the crash. According to CBS Local Philadelphia, the mayor stopped and rendered aid to the accident victim, remaining at the crash scene until medical help arrived.

The fact that the mayor was involved and the bike accident widely publicized is a very good thing, as it reminds motorists that they need to be careful of bicycle riders even in the winter months as the weather grows cooler. While any bicycle accident lawyer in Delaware Valley knows that bike accidents are especially likely to happen in the summer since more people ride, the winter can be dangerous for bikers as well.  In fact, in some ways, the winter presents more of a risk to bikers because the roads are slippery, it gets darker earlier and drivers may not be paying attention to bikes because they don’t expect to see them in the cold.

Bicycle Accidents Still a Risk in Winter

Although many drivers assume they don’t need to worry about bikes in the winter, the truth is that many people commute via bicycle even during the winter months. Philadelphia makes it possible for motorists to do this (and also to walk if they wish to do so) because the city has a good environment for bicyclists. The Walk Score for Philadelphia is 76, while the Bike Score is 67. Philadelphia is described as a “very walkable” city because the majority of errands can be accomplished by someone who is on foot without a vehicle.

Philadelphia earned its walk score and bicycle safety score for more reasons than just proximity of amenities. Walkscore.com described Philadelphia has having terrain as “flat as a pancake” and as having good bike lanes.   This is good news for bicycle riders, but of course as the recent accident shows, this doesn’t mean that there are no risks of getting hurt or killed in a crash.

Bike riders and motorists both must be careful to avoid high-risk behavior that could lead to a crash happening. Motorists, for example, must:

  • Be on the lookout for bicyclists, who may continue to ride throughout the winter.
  • Avoid encroaching on bicycle lanes and wait to pass a bicycle rider until there is plenty of room and it is safe to do so.
  • Yield the right-of-way to bike riders, who are entitled to the same respect as any other driver on the road.

Bicycle riders, to do their part to avoid accidents, should wear brightly colored clothing; understand that visibility may be reduced in the winter; should obey the rules of the road; and should try to make eye contact with drivers before crossing the road or making a turn to ensure that the motorists see them.

A bicycle accident lawyer in Philadelphia can help if you are involved in a crash. Contact Flager & Associates at 1-215-953-5200 for a free case consultation.

Flager & Associates is a Pennsylvania Law Firm. We cover cases across Philadelphia, Yardley, Bristol, Bensalem and Levittown/ Fairless Hills. Most of the cases we cover are auto accidents, slip and fall, and product liability related.

Flager & Associates

Teens Learn about Distracted Driving Dangers from Grieving Father

22
Nov 2013
By:

Distracted driving is a serious issue throughout the United States, and states have been cracking down and passing tougher laws in recent years. The Huffington Post reports that, while there were just 28 states with general texting bans applicable to all drivers in 2010, today there are 41 states that do not let drivers text behind the wheel. There are bans for at least some drivers in 47 states and DC, so it is almost universal that every location imposes at least some restrictions on texting. 

Even with these tougher laws, however, any texting and driving attorney in the  Delaware Valley knows that drivers still continue to text behind the wheel every day. Drivers also engage in other distracting behavior that takes the focus off of the road, like putting on makeup, drinking, eating, entering info into a GPS device, or reaching behind or across the seat to retrieve objects. Drivers do these things even knowing that distracted driving can be dangerous because most people don’t think that they will become one of the victims of distracted driving.

Drivers need to fully understand exactly what is at stake when they make the choice to drive distracted. One grieving father whose daughter was killed in a crash has made it his mission to teach young people about the dangers of distracted driving. As the Delaware County Daily Times reports, the father lost his daughter in 2009 when another motorist took his eyes off the road for just a second and reached over to his seat in order to get a GPS. The young girl was killed as she was legally crossing the street.

Grieving Father Teaches Kids about the Realities of Distracted Driving

The man whose daughter was killed in the crash has made presentations to more than 30,000 people in the past two years, including high schools throughout Delaware County. The last stop in his 2013 program was with students in the Family Career and Community Leaders of America program, as he hopes that these students will help spread the message that distracted driving is too risky.

Part of his presentation involves short films that reveal how his own daughter’s tragedy has changed the way her friends drove because they had to think about the fact that distracted driving really is deadly. The other film features a woman who was driving distracted and veered off the road and killed a man. The films are meant to drive home the point that anyone can be injured or killed in a distracted driving accident.

His message is one that many experts try to deliver each year to the motoring public. A recent article in the Huffington Post illustrated that distracted driving is something that “everyone does,” because most people routinely eat, talk on a phone or otherwise engage in distracting behavior without incident. As drivers repeatedly do these things whenever they drive, it reinforces their perception that a distracted driving crash could not happen to them.  Yet, even if these drivers are safe in almost every trip they take, it only takes one instance of being distracted at the wrong time to cause a deadly crash. The man who lost his daughter is all too aware of this harsh reality, but hopefully teens who listen to his presentation will also learn this lesson before they make driving choices that result in them hurting themselves or others.

A car accident lawyer in Philadelphia can help if you are involved in a crash. Contact Flager & Associates at 1-215-953-5200 for a free case consultation.

Flager & Associates is a Pennsylvania Law Firm. We cover cases across Philadelphia, Yardley, Bristol, Bensalem and Levittown/ Fairless Hills. Most of the cases we cover are auto accidents, slip and fall, and product liability related.

Flager & Associates