Many people think of a right hook as a type of punch in boxing, one that was particularly effective when delivered by Muhammad Ali, possibly the greatest boxer of all time.
There is another right hook, and it’s a very dangerous and all-too-common accident usually between a motor vehicle and a bicycle. It’s an accident that most drivers don’t see coming because the bike often sneaks up behind them in their “blind spot” where it’s difficult to see moving objects.
Here’s how a “right hook” bicycle vs. car accident often occurs:
A right hook bicycle accident happens when a driver attempts to make a right hand turn at an intersection or at a driveway and does so in front of an oncoming bicyclist. Most often, the driver of the car passes the bicyclist on the left and believes he or she can turn her vehicle before the cyclist will arrive at the same point. However, drivers are often poor judges of how fast a cyclist is riding and therefore they underestimate a cyclist’s speed, leading to a situation where a rider can collide with the passenger side of a car as the car turns.
The nature of the impact in a right hook accident means that a rider will often be thrown from his bike and may land on the car itself, on the pavement, or on another surface in the area. Injuries happen regularly in these collisions and the majority of the injuries will require medical treatment for a victim to recover. In many instances, an accident of this type can be so severe that it may be fatal.
If you are driving and you see a bicyclist on the right paralleling your course, never assume you have a clear path unless you confirm the bicycle is either way behind you or has stopped or has already negotiated the turn and is clear. You won’t see it coming, but you may cause a very serious accident.
There is often disagreements between drivers and bicyclists as to who has the right of way. Be smart, avoid problems, and just yield. It’s not worth a serious accident just to get your way. Remember, cars have a LOT more steel and a lot more weight than a bike.
The following information is a portion of a Statewide Analysis of Bicycle Crashes from the Florida Department of Transportation:
Drivers were at-fault in 45.7% of the crashes, while bicyclists were at-fault in 30.2% of the crashes.
Signalized intersections experienced a greater proportion of bicycle crashes compared to non-signalized locations.
The most common causes of bicycle vs. motor vehicle crashes:
Motorist turns right while bicyclist is crossing the street
Motorist turns left facing bicyclist
Bicyclist rides out at intersection
Motorist drives out at stop sign
South Florida Accident Attorneys
If you are in an accident that involves a bicycle, please reach out to us at 954-356-0006. We will examine the details and evidence, then advise you as to the best course of action. We always work hard to make sure the rights of our client are protected.