It’s becoming more and more common in the city of Chicago to use bicycles not just as a means for exercise or recreation, but as a method of transportation and a means to get from Point A to Point B. More frequently, Chicagoans are using bicycles for commuting to work and school or to travel for their chores and errands. The city has even recently seen the addition of bicycle lanes throughout major downtown streets. However, with more and more cyclists on the road, drivers and cyclists alike need to work together to learn to share the road and watch out for one another. When parties are negligent, accidents are almost always extremely serious, especially considering the difference is size and speed between a motor vehicle and a bicycle.
A recent article by the Chicagoist relayed some most unfortunate news about a Chicago bicyclist. An individual on a bicycle was struck by a car at a three-way intersection in the neighborhood of Lincoln Park. According to the original report, authorities believed that upon collision the cyclist died. Now, however, police are reporting that the cyclist survived the collision. Police stated that the individual is talking and in stable condition.
When the accident occurred, the cyclist was near the intersections of Lincoln Avenue, Fullerton Parkway, and Halsted Street around 12:30 in the afternoon – a busy lunch hour time in the city, where many leave work to grab a bite to eat. It is not uncommon for roads to be busy at this time, and all the more reason that everyone on the road needs to be vigilant drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists alike. At this time, the cyclist was hit by a car that was turning right on to Fullerton Avenue.
Unfortunately these types of bicycle accidents are too common in Chicago. There have been at least four cyclist fatalities in the city of Chicago this year alone. In fact, according to the same article, Illinois ranks fifth in the nation for bicycle fatalities for the years 2010 through 2012. Additionally, cyclists age 20 and over account for over 84 percent of cycling deaths in 2012. In 1975, they accounted for 21 percent, as a comparison.
Another article by the Chicagoist reports statistics on how much bicycling has increased in the city of Chicago. There is an estimated 125,000 people who ride their bike every day in Chicago. The number of people who ride bicycles in Chicago has tripled since the year 2000. In just fifteen years, this is a significant escalation in the number of bicyclists on the roads throughout the city. Seeing these numbers, our attorneys understand how important it is to keep everyone on the roads safe, and stress that the roads are for sharing. In addition, vigilance and avoiding negligent behavior is not just the job of one party. In fact, to keep everyone safe, drivers and cyclists alike must always practice safety. All parties must obey traffic signals, follow the rules of the road, and use signals when making a turn or changing lanes. If we all work together, we can make Chicago a safer place.