The bicycling culture in the Netherlands is one that deserves emulating around the world. In that country, researchers have developed a bicycle that is technologically equipped to detect obstacles in the environment. It therefore reduces the risk of accidents.
The smart bicycle was recently introduced in the Netherlands, and comes with a number of safety features that would make any California bicycle accident lawyer happy. The bicycle was designed purely with the target of reducing the number of accidents occurring in the country that is famous for its huge population of bicyclists. The Netherlands already has the lowest bicycle accident rates in the country, although it is home to some of the heaviest concentration of bicyclists. Authorities have however, recently noticed an increase in the number of accidents involving senior bicyclists.
The bicycle has been designed to include a radar system that is installed just below the bicycle handlebars. The radar system detects any approaching vehicles, or obstacles in the path of the bicycle. The bicycle is also equipped with a camera system which monitors the situation at the back of the bicycle. When the system detects obstacles from the front or the back, it activates vibrations in the handlebars, alerting the bicyclist to the risk of danger.
The bicycle also comes with a cradle that can hold a computer tablet to flash a light, whenever there is any approaching danger. Not only that, the bicyclist can also communicate with the tablet using wireless connectivity.
The radar system reduces the need for the bicyclist to look behind himself or herself to look out for the danger of an approaching vehicle, and also reduces the risk that bicyclists will be taken aback or frightened when the vehicle zips past them at high speed. In such cases, there is a serious danger of a bicyclist panicking and falling off the bicycle.
Distracted driving accidents involving people who are using their cell phones while driving, are a major factor in bicycle accidents in California. California currently has bans on the use of hand-held cell phones while driving, and texting while driving. However, California bicycle accident lawyers have noticed that those bans haven’t necessarily led to a drop in accident rates. A new study confirms this.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety analyzed car accident claims that were filed after two high-profile cell phone ban enforcement efforts by police in Connecticut and New York. They found that there was a drop in violations after these initiatives were implemented. However, there was no drop in insurance claims filed after car accidents.
That seems to indicate that there is no correlation between enforcement of bans on handheld drivers, and a lower risk of accidents. That’s because there are all sorts of distracting behaviors that motorists are engaging in, which often contribute to accidents. Those driving behaviors are not banned. On any given day on California roads, you see people snacking or drinking beverages, reading, talking to passengers, and engaging in many other types of distracting behavior at the wheel.
Each of those behaviors is serious enough to cause a bicycle accident. One of the biggest defenses that motorists have when they are involved in a bicycle accident is that they did not see the bicyclist until it was too late. Often, the reason they failed to see the bicyclist is because they were focusing on something else at the time.
Distracted driving needs to be taken more seriously, and merely having laws that ban hand-held cell phone while driving and texting while driving, wont help. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, we need to tackle the problem of distracted driving effectively, and to do that, we need a much broader and expansive approach, that includes many of the varied types of distracted driving out there.