If you have lived in a New York City neighborhood for a while, you are probably well aware of the dangerous intersections and when to avoid them. Certain intersections are prone to crashes because of high traffic, turn lane configurations, and the absence of bike lanes. Cyclists are often the victims of motor vehicle accidents, but local residents are speaking up, and bike lawyers are here to help make our streets safer for everyone.
An Example in Astoria
Perhaps you saw the tragic recent news story about 62-year-old Tamara Chuchi Kao, a cyclist who was fatally struck by a cement truck driver on 24th Avenue in western Queens. The truck driver was making a right turn from 24th Avenue to 29th Street, and Kao was the fourth cyclist to die in this dangerous thoroughfare in less than three years. Many more non-fatal crashes have occurred on 24th Avenue, causing injuries to cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers.
There are currently no bike lanes on either of the cross streets at the site of this crash. Most fatal cyclist accidents happen on streets that do not have designated lanes for lanes for cyclists.
Residents Respond to Bike Accidents
In response to this accident, activists with Families for Safe Streets have demanded safety improvements to local roadways. This group has pointed out that in the council district where the accident happened, not even 1.5 percent of the streets have protected cyclist paths. They are calling on the Department of Transportation to make the streets safer for cyclists, especially since long, big-rig trucks commonly travel down 24th Avenue and 29th Street for their business routes.
How a Bike Accident Lawyer Can Help
At the Law Office of Jeffrey K. Kestenbaum, we fight for the rights of cyclists who are injured on New York City streets. When you need a bike lawyer to assess your case and stand up to the insurance companies, we are here for you. Far too many car and bicycle accidents in Brooklyn leave innocent people with devastating injuries and mounting medical bills.
Bike accident lawyers help make NYC streets safer by bringing at-fault parties to justice for negligent driving and improperly maintained road conditions. We help our clients navigate the complex insurance and court processes to prove their cases and get them the compensation they need to pay medical bills and get back to normal life.
What You Can Do to Protect Cyclists
If you are interested in keeping cyclists safe in your NYC neighborhood, you can join a local coalition that reaches out to the appropriate city agencies. Local bike advocacy organizations can put you in touch with the right contacts and help you get involved with safety campaigns and community petition efforts.
For drivers, it is also a smart idea to familiarize yourself with bicycle rules of the road so that you understand how to safely navigate around bikes. When you are driving, always assume that a cyclist could be in your blind spot and use extra caution when making turns at notoriously dangerous intersections. Stay within the posted speed limit, yield to cyclists when turning, allow three feet when passing a bike, and look for possible cyclists before opening your car door when you park.
Together, we can make NYC a more bike-friendly city that respects the well-being of everyone on the road. If you have been involved in an accident involving a cyclist, contact us at 718-237-5586 for a free consultation.