San Diego residents know that the sprawling Pacific Coast Highway can be a beautiful place for a scenic drive or bicycle ride. But when bikers and cars share the narrow and winding road, the results can be deadly.
Earlier this month a cyclist on the highway was hit by a truck in the early morning hours. The cyclist was injured in the accident, which also shut down the highway for nearly two hours as police investigators and emergency crew cleared the scene of the crash. Bicycle accidents have been a serious problem in this particular area over the last few years, and the city of Malibu, where the accident occurred, has undertaken a study of the road and how they can improve safety conditions.
Bike accidents are also far too common across the entire state, which has finally prompted Governor Jerry Brown to do something to protect these vulnerable cyclists and improve bike awareness amongst the driving public. Starting next year, California drivers will be required to keep a safe distance from cyclists when passing them from behind. Hopefully this measure will provide additional safety to the bikers who share the road.
In the meantime, people who are injured in a bicycle accident caused by a larger vehicle continue to face serious injuries. Bikers, even those who wear protective gear and clothing, simply don’t have the same safety protections as those in cars. The fact is that even a minor bump from a car can be enough to send a cyclist hurdling towards the hard pavement, resulting in scrapes, broken bones or worse. People who are injured in bicycle accidents may be entitled to pursue a claim for damages, including medical expenses and pain and suffering, when a negligent driver causes them harm.
Source: NBC 4 Los Angeles, “Bicyclist Injured in PCH Crash,” Jonathan Lloyd, Oct. 2, 2013