Fatal bicycle crash highlights worsening trend in Ohio

Ohio roads pose a variety of dangers to motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians. Country highways are beset by speeders, and urban centers contain distracted motorists dealing with many different stimuli. Vigilance is important, as more fatalities occur on the roads every year.

To wit, the driver of a passenger vehicle was charged in connection with the recent death of bicyclist in Cleveland. Police reports and court filings state the 84-year-old driver ran a red light and struck a bicyclist crossing his path. The biker was struck and dragged by the car, causing fatal injuries.

There is much concern among Ohio cyclists about a disturbing trend. Bicycles and motorcycles are particularly endangered by inattentive or distracted drivers. The less visible smaller modes of transportation are harder to see, and vehicles' sudden turns can cut them off. Collisions are also more dangerous when they occur since riders are unprotected compared to drivers of cars and trucks.

Cleveland alone saw 144 bicyclists killed on its streets in 2016, with the surrounding Cuyahoga County reporting 238 injuries the same year. Cincinnati in southern Ohio is not immune, with the Ohio State Highway Patrol and local emergency services responding to more urban and open-road bicycle crashes every year this decade.

"Our work is about insuring the streets are safe so people can get to where they want to go," said the executive director of Bike Cleveland, a bicycle safety advocacy organization. "We . . . urge motorists . . . behind wheel to pay attention to what [they're] doing, because there's fathers, sons, daughters and mothers out there riding."

Bicyclists injured in motor vehicle collisions and other accidents may make claims for reimbursement for medical expenses and compensation for pain and suffering through court filings and other legal actions.

Source: WJW, "84-year-old driver charged with running red light, killing man on bike in Cleveland," Ed Gallek and Suzanne Stratford, Aug. 09, 2017

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