Although studies show that street riding is the safest method to avoid bicycle accidents while riding, at Lewis & Tompkins, we also understand that it’s not always a viable option for many. In many instances, bikers must resort to riding on the sidewalk as they travel from place to place. If you’ve done this before, you’re not alone.
Do you have young children who cannot confidently and safely ride bicycles on busy streets yet? Do YOU not feel confident enough to ride your bike amidst bottlenecked traffic? Road construction have a portion of street blocked off, forcing you to ride on the sidewalk or find an alternative route? These are just a few reasons many bicyclists may opt for the sidewalk while riding through Washington, D.C.
If you choose to ride on the sidewalk, there are a few things you can do to minimize your chance of getting into a D.C. bicycle accident.
- Ride slowly.
- Remember that pedestrians have the right of way – You may have to get off your bike and walk it on the sidewalk in areas congested with pedestrians.
- Approach driveways carefully – Always checking in both directions before crossing.
- Don’t ride distracted – Headphones and cell phones inhibit your ability to hear what’s happening around you, and your ability to focus your attention of unpredictable variables.
- Ride defensively – Assume that cars and pedestrians don’t see you.
- Watch out! This is especially important when transitioning between the sidewalk and the road.
- Know your local laws – Some areas have laws restricting bicycle riding on sidewalks in certain areas like around municipal buildings or schools.
Choosing to ride safely can help you prevent an unnecessary bicycle accident from happening due to your own personal choices. However, if you are injured in a Washington, D.C. bike accident through no fault of your own, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injuries. Speaking with an experienced bicycle accident attorney, like ours here at Lewis & Tompkins, can help you understand your legal rights, and what your options may be. One simple phone call to 202-296-0666 can schedule a free, no-obligation case evaluation with one of our skilled personal injury attorneys. Call today!