Those in New York for whom bicycling is a typical mode of transportation or exercise do not have to be told of the risks. Even in areas where bike lanes are provided, bicyclists may still be exposed to fast-moving traffic, distracted drivers and busy intersections. Drivers are not always on the lookout for those on two wheels, and even the most cautious rider cannot predict when the negligence of a driver will result in an accident with serious injuries.
Wise bicyclists are always aware of this reality. The odds are against them when they travel among larger vehicles, so they take certain steps to be well prepared in the event of an accident, including:
- making sure they have adequate insurance in case the driver does not or in case the driver fails to stop after an accident
- carrying printed identification in case their cell phones become damaged
- carrying printed and easily accessible copies of emergency contacts, medical conditions and other information they may not be able to supply if they are injured
- installing cameras on the front and rear of their bikes to provide evidence of the cause of the crash
- carrying a first aid kit
In the event of a bicycle accident, it is important for a rider to already know the steps to take to improve the chances of obtaining full and fair compensation from insurance coverage or a civil claim. Bicyclists do not often get the benefit of the doubt in an accident with a motor vehicle. Therefore, following an accident, it is smart to document the scene if one is able, speak to witnesses and always accept medical assistance.