Portland is home to more bicycle enthusiasts than anywhere in the country. Whether by renting a bike, taking a guided bike tour of the city, venturing out solo on bike routes in neighborhoods throughout the area, or commuting to work, more and more people take to bicycling in Portland each day. Of course, concerns over bicycle safety have become a hot topic. How safe is it to ride a bicycle through the busy streets of Portland?
Comparatively speaking, is it safer to ride a bike than it is to, say, fly in an airplane? The fact is it is actually safer to fly than it is to ride a bike. Bicycle safety is not something to underestimate, and injuries as a result of bicycle mishaps mean more than just scraped knees. To be sure, bicycle injuries can be serious and life-threatening.
Bicycle vs. Airplane Safety in Portland
While reports on the news raise alarms about airplane crashes, bicycle accidents go virtually unnoticed. In truth, the risks are greater of being involved in a bicycling accident than experiencing technical difficulties while flying. According to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), there have been over 350 reports of incidents related to flying in the state of Oregon over the past 10 years. All of these incidents relate to small, personal aircrafts flown by amateur pilots. In fact, the last major airliner crash in Oregon occurred in 1978, when a United Airlines flight crashed near Portland. Of the 189 people aboard, 10 died.
In contrast, there have been twice as many accidents in Oregon involving bicyclists. So many, in fact, that the government of Oregon has stepped in. A program on bicycle safety was launched in 2013 to try and reduce the amount of cyclists killed and injured in bicycle accidents each year. Over the last decade, there have been over 750 injuries due to bicycling accidents, with over 100 deaths as a result of these accidents.
Bicycle Safety Tips
Injuries from bicycle accidents can be severe. To avoid injury, it’s important to follow Portland’s bicycle laws and heed a few safety tips. For example, when you’re bicycling remember that pedestrians have the right of way. At crosswalks and intersections, be sure to stop your bike and let pedestrians pass. Also important is to be aware of and respond to stop signs and signals. Bicyclists have to abide by the same rules of the road as other drivers. To avoid accidents and injuries, stop at red lights and stop signs, and be mindful of traffic.
Additionally, there are safety tips that automobile drivers should be aware of when traveling Portland streets bustling with bicyclists. Motorists should remember to always use their signals when making a turn, and to check their side view mirrors before making the turn, in case there are cyclists alongside them. Respect bike lanes and make room for cyclists on busy roads or narrow streets. Taking precautions such as these will hopefully cut down on bike accidents in the city.
Call Our Bike Injury Attorney
At the Johnston Law Firm, we understand the rights of bicyclists. Contact our experienced Portland bicycle accident attorney if you’ve been injured as the result of a bicycle accident. Our Portland bicycle accident attorneys understand the inherent dangers, as well as the responsibilities, that come along with bike riding. If you’ve been injured as the result of a cycling injury, call us today to discuss your case.