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Statistics Show Cycling Is No Picnic In California

Recent statistics released by the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that California is one of the deadliest states for bicyclists.

The statistics show that in 2015, Florida had the most bicyclist deaths in the nation with 150, followed by California with 129. No other state had more than 50; five states had no bicyclist fatalities at all.

In another set of statistics, the NHTSA reports that the number of cyclist fatalities in California fluctuated between 2008 and 2017 between a high of 155 (2016) and a low of 99 (2009).

2018 statistical sample

In 2018, the state Department of Public Health found that:

  • About 4 percent of traffic fatalities in the state involved bicyclists
  • Per 100,000 residents, the rate of bicyclist injuries rose from 28.4 in 2007 to 34.4 in 2013
  • Most bicyclist injuries occur in the summer
  • Most injuries occur between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.
  • More than 75 percent of bicyclists injured in traffic accidents were men
  • Top two counties for fatalities: San Joaquin and Sacramento
  • Top two counties for injuries: Inyo and Santa Cruz

What to do after an accident

If you are one of the unlucky few who suffer an injury while riding your bike in California, the first thing you should do is seek medical attention. Many accidents involve head, neck and spine injuries that might not be immediately apparent.

You should also try to get as much information as possible including the driver's name and contact information, the driver's insurance information, the vehicle's license plate number as well as the year, make, model and color of the vehicle, and any contact information of any witnesses.

If you have a camera on your phone, you can use that to help you remember some of these details.

After you've received medical attention and gathered information, you should contact a lawyer. You can recover damages from your accident including medical bills, lost wages, physical injuries and disabilities, and money to repair your bike.

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