Bicycling is becoming more popular in the Des Moines and Ames regions. There are organizations and programs that promote biking and bike safety, including the Des Moines Bicycle Collective, Iowa Bikes, and Ames Bike Smart.
According to Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, in 2012 nationally, 726 lost their lives in bicycle/motor vehicle crashes nationally, just under two people every day of the year in the U.S. The death rate from bicycle crashes is high due to the relative lack of protection bicyclists have in an impact with a motor vehicle.
Iowa traffic-safety laws are designed to allow bicyclists to share the road safely with motor vehicles in an increasingly crowded space.
According to the State of Iowa Department of Transportation:
The Iowa Department of Motor Vehicles provides information on traffic and safety laws.
These departments are good resources after a bicycle crash.
While helmets and proper reflective gear make bicycling safer, riding a bicycle is riskier than driving a car. Maintaining control is more difficult on two wheels, and when collisions happen, bicyclists are at greater risk of serious injury or death because they don't have an enclosed vehicle for protection.
Common causes of bicycle crashes include:
Motorist turning across path of cyclist;
Cyclist riding into the path of a motor vehicle;
Cyclist turning right from a major road and from a minor road;
Child cyclist playing or riding too fast.
In an injury bike crash, it is crucial to get appropriate medical treatment, regardless of the financial cost. The major hospitals in the area include:
As soon as possible, an injured person should contact their insurance company to find out how medical treatment is covered under their insurance policy. Since insurance policies often have unique provisions to deal with bicycle-accident injuries, it is important to review the policy and speak with the insurance adjuster to get clarification on coverage.
When a bicycle accident, caused by the negligence of a motorist, results in serious injury or death, the next step is to find an experienced Des Moines - Ames bicycle accident attorney to start the financial recovery process by launching an insurance claim. Major injury or wrongful death claims are complicated and can be hard to manage without legal help. Since most personal injury lawyers offer a free initial consultation and work on a contingency basis, meaning that there are no up-front costs and all fees are paid when the claim is settled, there is no downside to speaking with a great Des Moines - Ames personal injury lawyer right away, to get help for an injured bicyclist.