Some surveys suggest that commuting by bicycle is less popular now than it was in 2014. While a few cities and states have worked to improve conditions for cycling, the truth is that many riders still feel unsafe. Cyclist deaths have risen in recent years, even as other types of vehicle fatalities have fallen. The rise in cycling deaths is troubling. So what is causing all these deadly accidents?

Bicycle/Motor Vehicle Crashes

Bicycle safety is important. But even a perfectly safe cyclist is in danger on Florida roads. Careless drivers, distracted drivers, drunk drivers and aggressive drivers are a tremendous threat to someone on a bike. One of the most common types of fatal accident between a car and a bicycle involves vehicles striking bicycles from behind. Cyclists can’t force the drivers around them to pay attention or give them appropriate space. Even the best helmet in the world, perfectly fitted for the rider, has little chance of saving a rider run over by an SUV.

The fact is that someone in a car has little to fear from these collisions. Drivers aren’t injured when they strike bicycles. It is the cyclists who take on all the risk when drivers pay more attention to their cell phones than the road. When accidents happen, cyclists suffer serious injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, or even death. Drivers might be emotionally upset, but the impact on them pales in comparison to the impact on the cyclist.

Negligence And Accountability

While it would be smart for cities to pay more attention to the needs of cyclists and pedestrians, the fact of the matter is that drivers need to do better. Cyclists have the same rights to use the roads as people driving. Drivers must pay attention to their surroundings and drive responsibly. When a driver fails to do that, and it results in an injury or death, that driver must be held accountable for the failure.