The warm weather in Arizona causes many residents and visitors to spend their time outdoors. Whether an individual engages in it for enjoyment or as a mode of transportation, bicycling is a common occurrence in our city. While the cities throughout the state are equipped with mechanisms to ease bicycle travel, the unfortunate reality is that many cyclists are injured and killed each year in automobile accidents.
How common are fatal bicycle accidents in Arizona? Based on data from 2015, Phoenix was listed as one of the most dangerous cities for cyclist. In fact, it was listed as the fifth most dangerous city with a rate of 5.1 fatalities per one million individuals. The city with the highest fatality rate was Albuquerque with 8.9, followed by Tucson with 7.5 fatalities per one million people.
In 2015, there were a total of 193 traffic fatalities. Of those, eight were cyclists, which accounts for 4.1% of all traffic fatalities. When looking at the state as a whole, there was a total 893 traffic fatalities. Of those, there were a total of 29 cyclist fatalities, which accounted for 3.2% of all traffic fatalities. This puts the rate for the state at 4.2 cyclist fatalities per million.
When bicycle-automobile crashes occur, it can be a complex matter. Thus, it can be difficult to determine cause and liability. This is where investigation and point of impact can be resourceful. Based on the 2015 data, 96% of the cyclists were killed in a single vehicle accident, 84% were impacted by the front of the vehicle, 45% of the cyclists were killed by light trucks, and the right side of large trucks caused roughly 21% of the fatalities. Passenger vehicles caused less than 6% of these fatalities.
A bicycle accident can be a tragic event, taking the lives of an unsuspecting cyclist. Those who have lost a loved one in a bicycle crash should understand that they may have legal recourses available. A wrongful death action could help family members hold a negligent driver accountable for the crash, which may allow those family members to recover compensation for damages suffered.