Bicycling accidents can happen whether a car hits you while you are cycling, you hit a rut in the road, or you were riding distracted. Distracted riding means that instead of focusing your sole attention on cycling, you were only half paying attention while something else caught your eye. In our age of abundant cell phone usage it might be hard to ignore a call or text while cycling. However, studies show that cell phone use decreases cycling performance, which may increase the likelihood of bicycling accidents.
In a study done on cell phone calls and cycling, 88% of participants stated that they themselves were the ones making calls on their cell phones, rather than picking up a received call. Out of all the participants, nearly half (42%) stated they were faced with a dangerous situation while talking on the phone and cycling. During the study, talking on the phone resulted in missing more objects on the road and swerving outward to obtain more side space. Doing these things while riding on a road shared with cars can increase the risk of bicycling accidents.
Texting while riding your bicycle has the most profound effect on cycling performance. Even cyclists themselves tend to slow down to about 2 miles per hour when texting as opposed to the normal cycling speed of 10 to 15 miles per hour. The study done on distracted driving, however, shows that since riders slowed their bikes, less bicycling accidents took place. Researchers believe this is because while texting is distracting, riders were aware of this fact and compensated, making it safer for them.
Listening to Music
Studies done on cycling and listening to music are limited to headphone usage. Cyclists are generally unable to make use of a radio as drivers can with their cars, so they use their cell phone as their music player along with headphones. Cycling like this is dangerous because they can miss certain sounds that alert them to danger: sirens, car horns, and other cyclists trying to pass. While there was no increase to bicycling accidents while listening to music, it is not recommended.
Who to Talk with About Bicycling Accidents
Bicycling accidents are no joke—they can seriously injure you. Even if you were riding distracted, there is no law against cell phone usage while riding your bicycle. If you’ve been in a bicycle accident and suffered multiple injuries you could be entitled to compensation. Call The Advocates, experienced bicycling accident attorneys, who can discuss your case with you. Attorneys are available day or night so call whenever you are able!