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Bicycle Safety: How to Dress Properly for Cycling

Thursday, March 24, 2016

There are a lot of bicycle safety "rules" for you to keep in mind if you want to stay safe while you're out on the road. One thing that you might not be putting enough thought into, for example, is what you wear when you hop on your bike. Ensuring that you dress properly, however, can help keep you safe. These are a couple of tips that can help prevent accidents.

Make Sure Clothes are Properly-Fitting

First of all, you should make sure that your clothes fit properly when you're on your bike. Although it might seem more comfortable to wear loose-fitting clothing, loose clothing can get caught in your chain or tires. Wear clothing that fits you somewhat tightly but that is still comfortable.

Wear Bright Colors

It really isn't safe to hit the road on your bike when you're wearing dark colors. Look for clothing in your favorite bright colors so that you can ensure that motorists can always see you, even if you find yourself riding early in the morning or after dark. If you do not wear brightly-colored clothing, you should at least wear a colorful vest with reflectors to ensure that motorists are aware of your presence when you're on the road.

One important part of bicycle safety is ensuring that you are dressed properly. Follow these tips, and you can help keep yourself safe on the road and elsewhere. If you do find yourself in a bicycling accident, however, you can contact us at the Law Office of Gary Brustin today.


Biking Enthusiasts May Want to Consider Safety Issues Before Buying Green

Friday, March 18, 2016

Biking has always been considered an eco-friendly activity for obvious reasons. But today’s entrepreneurs are finding ways to make it even greener. You might ask, “How is that even possible?” Well it starts like everything else, with the foundation. An increasing number of people feel it’s time to toss the metal frames away and go with sustainable materials instead.

Which sustainable materials are currently being used? There are already firms experimenting with bamboo, wood, recycled cardboard and refurbished parts ala steam punk style. While we agree that they’ve all got the cool factor, what about bicycle safety? Do the sustainable materials have the ability to withstand impact with guard rails or motor vehicles? In order to answer that critical biking question, we must look at whether or not the industry is federally regulated.

In many respects, it does receive government oversight. However, there have been bumpy stretches of pavement on the way to greener alternatives. The bumps have largely been prompted by industry innovations moving faster than the federal law making process. For example, the laws were written with traditional metal bicycles in mind, not the latest materials. As such, not all bicycles may fall under the current industry requirements.

What are the current requirements when it comes to bicycle frames? Some of them are listed in Federal Code Title 16. Look for them in Chapter 2, Section 1512. They indicate that frames must meet certain strength guidelines. The strength guidelines, however, are for downward pressure only. Curiously, they don’t mention the ability to withstand impact with another object.

So will these green bicycles hold up in an impact like their traditional counterparts? We can’t say for sure until the bike manufacturing laws catch up to the entrepreneurs. With that said, biking enthusiasts should choose their rides carefully and consult with bicycle accident attorneys as needed.


Ventura County’s Bicycle Laws Aren’t Enough to Protect Riders’ Lives or Wallets

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Do you know which bicycle laws apply in Ventura County, specifically Oxnard? If not, better boost your biking IQ before that next ride. The local police frequently conduct random stops and the city has seen its share of fatal accidents too. One of the more recent tragedies took place in a popular cycling area on January 26th, 2016. In that instance, a vehicle backed over a cyclist during daylight hours.

How prevalent are random stops and bicycle accidents in the county? Let’s turn to the county’s bicycle safety report from last year. It’s presently the most current one available to the public. It clearly showed that close to 50 people died in biking accidents during an 18-month period alone. In our bicycle accident attorney’s opinion, that’s 50 to many.

In addition, it pointed out that although people are frequently detained by the police for related, bicycle law violations, there is precious little follow through going on. At least that was true until January 2016 when a number of riders found themselves on the wrong end of tickets. No word was released on how many motorists, if any, were also affected by the pre-planned sweep.

Interestingly enough, the previously mentioned report also noted that motor vehicle drivers in the area have a tendency to rear-end cyclists, which means that they were likely in violation of the 3-Feet Clearance Law of 2014. The bicycle law was created in response to county members’ previously voiced concerns but has yet to make an impact on motorists’ overall behavior. And sadly, rear-end collisions and others that involve motor vehicles often end with life threatening or altering injuries for cyclists.

Respected publication, The American Family Physician, previously published which types of injuries are likely to occur during such incidents. Among them are intracranial hemorrhage, parenchymal lung damage, facial contusions and splenic ruptures. Obviously, they may all prove deadly depending on the severity of the traffic accident.

This all leads avid cyclists to ask, “Is knowing and adhering to Ventura County’s bicycle laws enough to stay safe?” Sadly, they’re not enough. Accidents still happen and Oxnard cyclists need lawyers that will fight to protect them should an unfortunate turn of events leave them bedridden or dead. To find one familiar with the area’s cycling pathways, accident history and bicycle laws, please contact us today.

Biking with Buds? Better Think Twice Before Putting Those Feet to the Pedals

Thursday, March 03, 2016

Throughout the day, many of us undoubtedly reach for the ear buds. Maybe we want to zone out on the trip home or psych ourselves up for a long cycling trip. Either way, it’s a habit that could cost Californians dearly in the weeks to come. As ABC7News reported in early January 2016, there are ear bud laws on the books and cyclists are among the group of people they’re meant to target.

Ear buds have obviously been around for many years now but they’re not without controversy. People worry that the tiny accessories will either block out the sound of oncoming traffic or cause hearing damage. This is primarily a concern with cyclists who turn the volume up on their mobile devices beyond recommended levels. Plus, the buds may serve as a distraction or pose an entanglement risk too.

As a consequence, California lawmakers have made it their mission to dissuade cyclists from using them altogether. And as a domino effect, the new laws may also influence future accident cases. For example, if a biking accident victim was wearing ear buds at the time of impact, will the courts see his or her actions as contributory negligence? And further, will he or she still be fined for violating the law?

Currently, our state recognizes what’s known as the Pure Comparative Fault Rule. So yes, the courts will take the fact that a cyclist was wearing ear buds at the time of the accident into consideration. However, it will not be the sole, influencing factor in biking accident cases involving ear buds. In addition, the cyclist could very well still face punitive costs for breaking the state’s ear bud laws.

To learn more about how ear bud use may impact biking accident cases going forward, please contact attorney Gary Brustin today.


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