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Bike Accident Lawyer Des Moines IA
Injured in a bicycle accident in Iowa? Get help from the bike accident lawyer Des Moines IA trusts.
If you or a loved one has been injured, or worse, in a bike accident in Iowa, contact our personal injury law firm today to learn what your rights are and how to best protect them. We can be reached at 515.493.4878 or via email.
Iowa has hundreds of miles of paved bike trails, unmaintained bike trails, and, of course, there is biking throughout our State’s cities and towns. Sadly, each year, bicyclists are injured or killed due to the negligence of another – frequently a motorist.
Bicycling has become an extremely popular activity across the country and Iowa is no exception. A quick scan of the roads might reveal a family on a leisurely ride, a solo rider on a race bike heading out on fifty mile jaunt, or a group of friends heading out with their mountain bikes to enjoy one of Iowa’s many off-road trails. Iowa even enjoys one of the country’s premier biking events each summer when RAGBRAI works its way across the state.
However, regardless of the type of bike or the terrain on which riders are biking, it is an activity that comes with risk. Fortunately, there are some things that bikers can control to help minimize injury and hospitalization. These controllable factors include following basic safety rules and using proper safety equipment. Unfortunately, these same riders cannot control what “the other guy” does. By “the other guy”, I mean anyone else who is on the road at the same time as the bicyclist.
Although wearing bright colors and having proper reflectors can help catch the eye of a motorist, they won’t typically prevent the other guy from texting, talking on his phone, daydreaming, eating, or any other myriad things that a driver does rather than paying attention to the road.
With the odds stacked against the biker in a car versus bike accident, following even a few of the following safety tips can help reduce injury in case of an accident or need of a bike accident lawyer Des Moines IA relies upon:
* Always wear a properly fitted helmet;
* Ride on the right – ride in the right lane unless you are passing, getting ready to make a left turn, or avoiding debris, potholes, or other hazards;
* Always ride with the flow of traffic;
* Follow traffic signs and use hand signals;
* When possible, make eye contact with motorists;
* Use proper reflectors and lights
Bike Accidents & Bike Injury Study
The Journal of the American Medical Association published a study in late 2015 which analyzed bike accidents and injuries between 1998 and 2013. In the study, data was collected from approximately one hundred hospitals across the United States and then analyzed. The study itself used bicyclists and pedestrian interchangeably as, technically, a bicyclists is a pedestrian. Call an experienced bike accident lawyer Des Moines IA cyclists trust to learn more.
The authors of the study found that injuries from bicycle accidents increased 28% during that time-frame and hospitalizations from bike injuries increased 120%. It was also learned that arm and leg injuries, such as broken bones, were the most frequent type of bike related injuries seen in emergency rooms but brain injuries were also quite common and the incidence of head injuries increased from 10% to 16% in that 15 year time frame as well.
As noted above, injuries requiring hospitalization increased 120% overall but the group with the largest individual increase in injury was those over 45 years old who saw an increase of more than 80% while the increase in hospitalization for that group increased 66%. Clearly, biking is no longer simply a “kid thing” but there are plenty of child injuries from bike accidents each year.
The reasons for the overall increase in injury and hospitalization aren’t entirely clear. However, the authors of the study surmised that the increases could be due to more street accidents as well as an increase in sport cycling in which participants typically bike much faster than a common leisurely biker. Bike tours such as RAGBRAI are also a source of bike accidents.
The increase in injury and hospitalization for the older riders (45+) likely shares several commonalities with older motorcyclists who are also experiencing an increase in injury. In short, older riders tend to have slower reflexes which can make it difficult for them to avoid an accident, many of them have not ridden bikes for many years and are out of practice which can lend itself to accidents, and many older riders do not have the muscle mass which their younger counterparts have which means older riders are often more susceptible to serious injuries should they be involved in a crash. Please see our page on motorcycle accidents in Iowa for more detail on older riders and injury,
The table provided below were taken from the aforementioned study by the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Table 2 – Proportion of Bicycle Injuries and Hospital Admissions by Age Group From 1998 to 2013