Is Bicycling at Night Safe in Ormond Beach?
Riding your bicycle in Ormond Beach will always be more dangerous at night, just as night driving is more dangerous than daytime driving.
Drowsy driving, impaired vision and driving under the influence all contribute to the number of evening bike accidents. And because bicyclists don’t have much protection, the accident is more likely to be fatal.
A few statistics on Florida night-bicycling accidents:
- About 40 percent of the nation’s bicycle deaths happen from 6 p.m. to midnight.
- Bicycle fatalities are more frequent in urban areas than rural ones. The risk climbs even 30 percent higher between 6 to 9 p.m. in urbanized areas.
- Florida, California, Texas and New York are the four states that account for the highest number of bicycle deaths in the nation.
- While just 3 percent of bicycle use occurs at night, almost 60 percent of all fatal Florida bike accidents occur during nighttime hours.
Of course, it’s not just motorists that are the cause of night-cycling accidents. Many bicyclists lack the proper road protocol, the right attire or increased awareness required to ride after dark.
Here are several steps Florida bicyclists can take to be safe at night:
- Stay in sight. A driver’s visibility becomes severely limited at night. A driver typically cannot see past the range of his headlights, and the glare from another car’s headlight can create further distraction.
- Light the night. Reflector patches, vests, headlights and wheel reflectors are all a must for night cyclists. Wear enough reflectors to be seen from all sides.
- Listen up! Don’t listen to headphones while bicycling, as you will be unable to hear vital traffic cues around you.
- Report bad drivers. If a driver hits you or almost hits you, report the incident to the police. Both drivers and cyclists are responsible for cyclist safety in Florida.
- Stay off main thoroughfares. Weekend drivers are more likely to be intoxicated. Keep to quiet streets and suburban neighborhoods at night.
- Watch the weather. Avoid flooded streets and take extra precaution to be seen in the rain. Since a driver’s vision will be extremely impaired during bad weather, it may be worth taking a taxi or bus that will carry your bike rather than riding.
Whatever the cause, bicycle accidents can often be painful, costly and even deadly. If you or someone you love has been injured in an Ormond Beach bicycle accident, get advice from a trusted Ormond Beach personal injury attorney by calling Zimmet & Zimmet today.