Accidents involving both cars and bicycles are increasingly common. According to People Powered Movement (PPM), a bike and walking alliance, Florida had 5,952 bicycle collisions in 2021. Such crashes caused 5,574 injuries and 169 deaths. PPM further found that in Florida, bicycle accidents are overwhelmingly caused by automobile drivers. Of the 169 fatal bike accidents in Florida in 2021, law enforcement officers found that automobile drivers were responsible for 140 of them. In total, that means that car drivers were responsible for approximately 83% of all fatal bicycle accidents in Florida in 2021. PPM similarly found that of the 759 bicycle accidents that resulted in life-threatening injuries and the 4,815 accidents resulting in minor injuries, Florida law enforcement officers placed the blame on automobile drivers in 76% of the serious accidents and 69% of the minor accidents.
Bike accidents result in a high percentage of fatalities for a number of reasons. Bicycles and other open-air vehicles expose the rider to greater risk during collisions as they are often thrown clear of the vehicle during a crash, creating more violent landings. Additionally, many bicycle riders do not use proper headwear, resulting in head trauma during collisions. Any impact to a person’s head is disproportionately likely to result in fatal injuries, further increasing the risk of death in bike accidents. A recently published news report detailed a fatal crash between a bicycle and an SUV crash in Bradenton, Florida, earlier this month.
According to a recently published news report, a 33-year-old man died when an SUV crashed into his bicycle. The man was riding his bicycle after midnight on Wednesday, August 9, when an SUV driven by a 23-year-old man struck the bike. A Florida Highway Patrol report stated that the bike rider was not wearing a helmet at the time and was pronounced dead at a local hospital. Law enforcement reports state that both the SUV and the bicyclist were traveling east on State Road 64 when the crash occurred, throwing the rider onto the bridge’s concrete surface before he collided with a raised curb.