May is National Bike Month, and some Illinois counties are taking this opportunity to address bicycle safety on the roads. Most cyclists ride their bikes as safely as most drivers operate their automobiles, but, there are exceptions -- regardless of the means of transport. Even though some bicycle riders may not follow the rules of the road, some automobile and truck drivers are simply negligent or distracted, while others have no consideration for bicycle riders. All too often, such negligence leads to a bicycle accident that can have devastating consequences.
A high school teacher filed a lawsuit against the city of Chicago, A&L, INC, and the Chicago Park District. This follows a devastating bicycle accident that caused life-changing injuries to the woman. She claims that her life will never be the same after the day she went for a bike ride along a cycling trail at a lake in Illinois.
Drivers in Illinois are required to yield when bicyclists have the right of way. Bicycle riders are extremely vulnerable because they have no protection, and it is not uncommon for a bicycle accident victim to suffer severe injuries or even death. While most drivers are aware of other vehicular traffic when they want to turn at intersections, some fail to keep a proper lookout for cyclists.
Illinois residents may share the concerns of residents of Bloomington over the number of serious accidents between cars and bicycles. After a recent bicycle accident -- the second within a month -- the cycling community wants to make sure the city follows through on proposed plans to build cycling lanes. The city is reported to be finalizing its master plan for cycling lanes.
Illinois residents may remember the horrific accident in Nov. 2011 when a 28,000-pound semi trailer knocked down a bicyclist on the streets of Chicago and rode over her. While the lawsuit against the truck driver and the owner the truck was scheduled for trial later this year, a settlement was recently reached. It was reported that the $9.75 million settlement is the highest in the state's history of settlements or verdicts reached in a bicycle accident case.
It is not uncommon for accidents involving bicycles and automobiles to result in severe injuries or even fatalities. This is mainly due to cyclists having no protection other than a helmet — which often may not be worn. Knowing the potential risks, cyclists, and also drivers, have a responsibility to be observant of all the rules related to road safety. Both cyclists and the drivers of vehicles are obliged to obey Illinois traffic laws and take reasonable care for their own safety and also the safety of other road users. A bicycle accident commonly results in substantial claims for recovery of damages; however, liability usually depends on whether negligence was involved.
Especially in the beautiful Illinois summer weather, riding one's bicycle can be an enjoyable as well as healthy experience. Due to the rising gas prices, more people are opting to ride their bicycles to places they need to go such as work instead of driving a motor vehicle. With an increased number of bicyclists, drivers of motor vehicles must be careful when driving near a bicyclist because they are not in enclosed vehicles and are susceptible to major injuries if hit. An Illinois bicycle accident occurred recently in which the cyclist was fatally injured.
Many parents in Southern Illinois and Missouri may be paying attention to the criminal case in Cook County, Illinois, involving a woman accused of killing a 9-year-old boy in a car vs. bicycle accident last spring. The woman, 23, pleaded not guilty to charges of felony aggravated driving under the influence resulting in death and a hearing was scheduled to take place today regarding a possible plea deal.