For the latest year available for a summary of bicycle accident statistics in the United States, 2012 represented a near record in terms of bicyclist deaths and injuries. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 726 bicyclists lost their lives during 2012. Although the number of bicyclist fatalities fell below 2001 numbers, 2012 produced 44 more fatalities than the previous year.
The estimated number of bicyclist injuries in 2012 climbed more than 1,000 from the estimated number of bicyclist injuries that occurred during 2011. Bicyclist injuries have sat near 50,000 for more than 10 years (www.pedbikeinfo.org). Government reporting agencies that handle bicycle related accident statistics cite improved hospital record keeping for the rise of bicyclist injuries, not a decrease in bicycle and vehicle safety attention.
Here are the raw bicyclist accident numbers:
- 2012 Bicyclist Deaths: 726
- 2012 Bicyclist Injuries: 49,000
- Increase in the Number of Bicyclist Injuries between 2001 and 2012: 8.9%
- Annual Cost of Bicyclist Injuries: $4 Billion (National Safety Council)
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) states adolescents between the ages of 15 and 24 and adult males older than 45 form the two most vulnerable demographics to the deaths and injuries caused by bicycle accidents. Children under the age of 14 experience the highest rate of non-fatal bicycle accident injuries, with the age group accounting for more than 60% of all bicycle-related emergency room visits. The CDC summary also presents statistical evidence that males are more likely to die in a bicycle accident than females. A vast majority of bicycle accidents unfold in urban areas, typically at non-intersection locations.
An estimated average of 67,000 cyclists visit emergency rooms in the United States every year (Lewis & Tompkins). Cyclists that do not wear protective helmets have a 14 times more likely chance of dying from a bicycle accident. If all cyclists wore protective helmets, then the number of brain injuries would decline by more than 50 percent. Â Â According to the National Survey of Bicyclist and Pedestrian Attitudes and Behavior, only 50 percent of cyclists wear protective helmets occasionally and only 35 percent wear their helmets at all times.
If you have been injured in an accident, then you should seek medical attention and then consult with a qualified lawyer. Jayson Lutzky is a Bronx, New York attorney with over 32 years of legal experience. He has helped accident victims recover money for lost wages, pain and suffering, and medical bills following accidents. Mr. Lutzky offers free in-person consultations. Visit www.MyNewYorkCityLawyer.com to learn more about Mr. Lutzkyâ€™s practice or call 718-329-9500 to schedule a free consultation.