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Think Motorbike: Safety on the Road (Part Two)

 

Think Motorbike Safety on the Road

In January, we brought you part one of our Safety on the Road series: Think Bike, which explored the increased risk to cyclists as an increasing number of people take to their bikes as a cost-effective, healthy and environmentally friendly way to get around. In the first part of the series, we provided our top tips for how to stay safe.

This month we are focusing on motorcycle safety. Although motorcyclists only account for 1% of road traffic, they account for a staggering 19% of road users involved in fatal accidents.

Motorbikes are a popular mode of transport for thousands of people across the UK who get great enjoyment from the sense of adventure riding a motorcycle brings, alongside the financial and environmental benefits.

However, motorcyclists are amongst the most vulnerable road users, as in comparison to cyclists, motorcyclists travel at the same high speeds as cars, yet without any of the protective features, a car offers such as seat belts and airbags. As such, it means that if you’re involved in a road traffic accident on a motorcycle, you’re at considerably more risk of serious injury.

In this blog, we’ll explore the steps that motorcyclists can take to stay safe on the roads, as well as the steps other road users can take to play their part in making the roads safer for those who are most vulnerable.

 

Safety Tips for Motorcyclists

 

  • Suit up – the notorious motorcycle leathers are there not just to look stylish, but to protect riders as they can help to prevent serious injury. A DOT-approved helmet is also crucial.
  • Ride defensively by always staying as visible as possible. Make sure you avoid drivers’ blind spots, drive with your headlights on even during the day and wear high visibility clothing.
  • Look out for hazards on the road such as potholes so you can take the appropriate action to avoid these.
  • Avoid cycling in poor weather conditions these can seriously compromise your ride.
  • Obey traffic rules and speed limits, and always make sure to use your turn signals and hand signals.
  • Stay focused, as any lapses in concentration could have serious consequences. Likewise, make sure you aren’t driving impaired.

 

Safety Tips for Drivers

 

  • Look – failure to look is one of the top reasons for road traffic accidents between cars and motorcycles.
  • Pay particular attention to junctions and roundabouts.
  • Take extra care to check for motorcyclists when changing lanes, as a motorcycle may be in the space you’re moving into or be fast approaching it.
  • Leave plenty of space when overtaking a motorcyclist, as much space you would leave a car if not more, as motorcyclists often need to move suddenly to avoid dangers on the road such as potholes.
  • Be aware of Advanced Stop Lines. These allow increased visibility for vulnerable road users such as motorcyclists. You must stop at the first white line if the traffic light is amber or red and when the green light shows, allow the road user time and space to set off
  • The lower your speed, the less risk you are to a motorcyclist. As motorcyclists are more sensitive to changes on the road and can manoeuvre much quicker, if you’re behind or passing a motorcyclist, be sure to do so slowly and carefully.

 

If you do find yourself injured due to a motorcycle accident, you may be due compensation if the accident was caused by the actions of another road user, if the road was in poor condition, or if your injury was due to an equipment failure.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrian Safety

Pedestrian Safety

 

Pedestrians are amongst the most vulnerable people on UK roads. Whilst there are many different methods of transportation that we can take advantage of, at one point or another, everyone is a pedestrian. Unfortunately, without the protection of a vehicle, or any safety equipment, pedestrians are vulnerable to serious injury. This can range from minor cuts and bruises to broken bones, to serious life-changing injuries.

 

Tragically, in 2019, pedestrians accounted for 27% of all road traffic accident fatalities in the UK, which was the highest proportion of any group besides car occupants.

 

Behind the statistics, are real people who are struggling with the consequences of being in a pedestrian accident.

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we understand that if you or a loved one has been involved in an accident as a pedestrian, you may be facing distressing and uncertain times and might be unsure of what to do next. This blog will guide you through your next steps, as well as our top tips for staying safe as a pedestrian.

 

What to Do If You’re in a Pedestrian Accident?

  • Seek Medical Attention

Of course, the priority is to ensure that you’re out of harm’s way and that the emergency services have been called. Even in the case of minor injuries, it’s important to see your GP after in case your condition worsens.

  • Report the Accident

All road traffic accidents involving injury must be reported to the police and you should obtain a police report/incident number.

  • Take Photographs

If possible, take pictures of the scene of the accident, the surrounding area, and your injuries.

  • Collect Information

Make sure to exchange details with the driver/s involved in the accident, as well as anyone who might have witnessed it.

 

Our Top Tips for Pedestrian Safety

  • Stop, look, listen.
  • Stay alert, don’t be distracted by electronic devices such as your phone that can take your attention off the road.
  • Choose a safe place to cross the road, such as at a pedestrian crossing or traffic lights.
  • Even at a pedestrian crossing, always pause before you step onto the road and check both directions to ensure there is no oncoming traffic.
  • Don’t assume a driver has seen you. Always try where possible to make eye contact before you cross.
  • If there is a footpath, use it. If not, stick to the right-hand side of the road facing oncoming traffic, and keep as close as possible to the side of the road.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors.

Think Bike: Safety on the Road

Think Bike: Safety on the Road

Think Bike Safety on the Road

Think Bike Safety on the Road

 

The number of people choosing to cycle, whether it be for the health benefits or as a way to get to work, has significantly increased in recent years within the UK – with an astonishing 3.2 billion miles cycled on our roads every year.

Unfortunately, cyclists are also amongst the most vulnerable road users within the UK and there is a serious risk from not only poor road conditions or faulty equipment, but also inattentive drivers.

In fact, when the UK began its first lockdown in 2020, the month of March saw cyclist fatalities double the average for that time of year, with 14 cyclists in Great Britain and one in Northern Ireland victims in road traffic incidents.

While this wasn’t a long-term trend and there are fewer cars on the road, we don’t want the risks of cycling to outweigh its clear benefits which are it is economical, environmentally friendly, and a fun way to get around. So, how can we make sure that cyclists and drivers are looking out for each other and keeping one another safe on the road?

 

Safety Tips for Cyclists

  • Ride decisively and make sure to keep clear of the kerb
  • Wear a correctly fitted cycle helmet
  • Always wear high visibility and reflective clothing, especially after dark
  • Make sure to always use lights after dark or when visibility is poor
  • Avoid riding up the inside of vehicles as you may not be seen
  • Use appropriate hand gestures to signal left/right turn taking
  • Take extra care at junctions and roundabouts, and make sure to give clear timely signals

 

Safety Tips for Drivers

  • Always keep an eye out for cyclists
  • Check for cyclists before pulling out at a junction, when doing a manoeuvre or when changing lanes
  • Take an extra look in your mirrors and blind spots
  • Leave plenty of space when overtaking a cyclist
  • Be aware of Advanced Stop Lines. These allow increased visibility for vulnerable road users such as cyclists. You must stop at the first white line if the traffic light is amber or red and when the green light shows, allow the road user time and space to set off
  • The lower your speed, the less risk you are to a cyclist, so take extra care to drive a little slower in residential areas and areas without cycle lanes

 

If you do find yourself injured due to a cycling accident, you may be due compensation if the accident was caused by the actions of another road user, if the road or cycle lane was in poor condition, or if your injury was due to an equipment failure.

 

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please feel free to get in touch with one of our no win no fee solicitors.

Road safety charity hits out at savage budget cut backs

In the budget today, it was announced that transport funding is likely to be cut by more than 25% by 2014, causing concern for the future of life-saving road safety measures.

Brake, the Road Safety charity, believes that these measures will contribute to a rise in casualties and consequential costs to the emergency services, making such cut backs a false economy.

There is to be an immediate cut to the road safety budget for the current year (2010/11) by a catastrophic 40%, made up of a 27% cut to the revenue grant of £20.6m and a £100% cut to the capital grant of £17.2m. The capital grant is used for road safety engineering measures such as pedestrian crossings and installation of fixed cameras and speed humps. The revenue grant is used for local authority-led local road safety partnerships, which carry out campaigns and education, particularly of young people, who are more likely to die on our roads than die from any other cause or illness and for costs such as maintenance of speed cameras.

Despite the cutbacks, the Department for Transport does not expect there to be a direct correlation between the savage grant reductions for road safety and local authority expenditure on road safety, saying it is for local authorities to decide where their priorities lie across all their responsibilities and they are free to swap funding from one area to another.

One road safety officer told Brake: “The major loss of funding this year, and the uncertainty of continued funding at all, may well result in the discontinuation of road safety partnerships with nothing to replace them. Road safety has been dropped and we can expect to see the death toll rise as a direct result.”

Ellen Booth, campaigns officer for Brake, said:

“Brake is outraged that road safety has been targeted so brutally – traffic is the biggest killer of young people and dangerous behaviour on roads causes thousands of horrific deaths and injuries of all ages every year in the UK. By targeting road safety, the government has shown they have no concern for the families of the future carnage we may see because of this irresponsible and short sighted cut of a vital life-saving service, and also no understanding of the enormous expense to the emergency services of road crashes and therefore the false economy of making these cuts.

The government has sent a very powerful message to local authorities that life saving work in road safety is not important at all.”

Bonnar & Company is all too familiar with the results of careless driving and poorly maintained roads and we are horrified by the government’s proposals. Most people would expect a new government to make safety on the roads a priority but it seems that we are being softened up for more swingeing cuts to health and safety expenditure across the board and that we can expect no favours from Lord Young’s forthcoming review.

If you have been hurt or injured in a road traffic accident and would like an expert legal review of your case at no charge, please contact us on FREEPHONE 0800 163 978.