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Car vs. bicycle accidents can have devastating consequences

The fact that bicyclists have none of the protection vehicle drivers have makes them extremely vulnerable on British Columbia roads. Even with wearing helmets, victims of bicycle accidents can suffer catastrophic or even fatal injuries when struck by cars. Distracted or impaired vehicle operators cause a significant percentage of recorded bike accidents every year.

Intersections are said to be particularly dangerous areas for car and bicycles. Drivers can prevent hitting cyclists by keeping a safe following and passing distance, yielding for them when necessary, and shoulder checking for bicyclists before turning right or opening the door -- the latter applies to passengers as well. Drivers must also scan for bicycle riders before turning left across bike lanes and before they enter the road from a driveway, parking lot or a side street.

Cyclist must also comply with road rules and obey traffic signals and signs. They must use bike lanes where they are available, and avoid riding on sidewalks. It will help to be extra cautious when riding past parked cars to avoid smashing into -- or being struck by -- an opening door. Bicyclists and their bikes must be as visible as possible, so reflective riding gear and strips on pedals and wheels are essential.

Victims of bicycle accidents in British Columbia may have to spend an extended time away from work with no income while medical bills are mounting. They do not have to go through this alone because an experienced personal injury lawyer can work to get the wheels rolling on ICBC claims. A lawyer can analyze the circumstances that led to the crash and do whatever is possible to get the benefits necessary for recovery.

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