Despite the several COVID lockdowns and restrictions in Ontario which led to fewer cars being on the road, cyclist accidents did not decrease. In Toronto alone, 22 pedestrians and cyclists were killed in the city this year. Cyclist deaths remain consistent within the last four years despite a significant increase in biking lanes implemented by the city.
Toronto has a vibrant cyclist scene, with over 1.4 million Torontonians who ride bicycles. As a result, Toronto has three times the injury rate of cyclists compared to the North American average. Some of the most common causes of cycling injuries include:
- A motorist ‘doors’ a cyclist by opening their door into an approaching cyclist.
- A motorist makes a left-hand turn in front of an oncoming cyclist.
- A motorist making a right-hand turn cuts off a cyclist riding parallel to the motor vehicle.
- A motorist at a stop sign on a side street pulls out in front of a cyclist entering the intersection.
- A cyclist is hit from behind by an overtaking motorist. This most commonly occurs at night in rural areas. It’s often contributed to by insufficient lights and reflectors on the bicycle.
- A motorist pulls out from a driveway in front of a cyclist.
A scenario that is becoming increasingly more common is pedestrians stepping onto designated city bike lanes resulting in an accident with a cyclist. With this in mind, it is crucial for cyclists to try and make themselves visible and practice defensive cycling at all times.
As a cyclist, it is crucial to follow these safety tips when cycling to avoid injury:
- Wear a helmet
- Clearly signal during turns
- At night, turn on your bicycle light
- At night, wear light-colored clothing or reflective fabric that glows in the dark to remain visible
- Ring a bell when passing or approaching a pedestrian or vehicle
- Always ride in designated bike lanes if available, and make sure to ring the bell if a pedestrian is approaching the lane
- Continuously shoulder check to ensure you are aware of your surroundings
- Ride in a predictable straight line
Following these safety steps will decrease the chances of bike accidents with pedestrians and minimize injuries.
While bicycle accidents are traumatic, and you may have other pressing matters on your mind, it is crucial to follow these recommendations to positively affect the outcome of any lawsuit related to the accident:
- Do not hesitate to call the police
- Gather evidence including pedestrian and witness information at the scene
- Take lots of pictures and video of the scene
- Seek medial attention and document your condition
- Consult an experienced personal injury lawyer to assess your claim
Bicycle Accident Lawyer Cabbagetown
If you or a loved one has been in a cycling accident, you can trust Tony Lafazanis to fight for you. Even if you are at fault, you may still be eligible for compensation. Tony is a cyclist himself and he understands the intricate details involved in this type of claim. He is a member of Cycle Toronto, a registered charity that is focused on making Toronto a better cycling city. With decades of experience in both cycling and personal injury law, Tony is the perfect advocate for a cyclist claim and will fight for your compensation.
Please take a moment to watch the webinar Tony presented to Cycle Toronto members, “Compensating Cyclists – Where there’s a will, there’s a way“
Contact Tony for a FREE case evaluation.