CT Personal Injury Lawyer: Advice for Bicyclists, Joggers, & Pedestrians

by Harvey J. Kulawitz, Esq.

by Harvey J. Kulawitz, Esq.

A day doesn’t go by when I’m driving and see someone jogging on the road, or walking (with earbuds) or bicycling – who’s wearing all black.   While it may be fashionable for a night out on the town,  it’s not cool when an oncoming vehicle can’t easily spot you until it’s too late.

Guess how many joggers are hit by cars every year?    Recent stats are in the range of 125,000!   Those are the ones that land in the hospital.   There are many more who are ‘scraped’ and thrown, but don’t need a hospital.  (Shoe tags and bracelets are now made for joggers for identification.  Guess why?   It’s a troubling thought.)

You probably don’t have to go far to find a jogger on a busy road near you wearing all black for their ‘run’.   What a shame.  They have no idea the danger that lurks around a bend :  a speeding car with a distracted driver who isn’t thinking about a sudden shadow of a person in the roadway!   A few moments hence and both of their lives will forever change.

The same holds true for pedestrians who head out for ‘early morning walks.’   Sure it’s a nice time to be out, but it’s also a tough time to be seen by cars.  I’ve handled many cases of early morning walkers – in a crosswalk – being struck down by an oncoming car because the driver (a) didn’t expect them to be there, and (b) couldn’t spot them!    Chances are the drivers are rushing to work, their mind elsewhere with the radio blaring when … boom .. something – a person – just flew up on their hood!   In one such case I asked the female pedestrian what color jacket she was wearing on her 6 a.m. walk?   ‘A dark color’  she said.

Pedestrians and joggers:   Please ->  WEAR BRIGHT REFLECTIVE CLOTHING EVERY TIME YOU GO IN A ROADWAY FOR RECREATIONAL USE!    Remember ->  you’re SHARING the roadway with MOVING VEHICLES!  Should  you get hit, it may well be your own doing.  Worse, you may never heal from your injuries.

Bicyclists have no excuse for not wearing bright colors and having the best lighting – front and rear – on their bicycles.   Every bicycle shop sells them.  It’s the gear of choice.

Thousands of cyclists are struck by cars every year.   I’ve handled many cases where a bicyclist, with the right-of-way, was suddenly cut off by a car making a left turn into a driveway smack in front of the cyclist.   In one case photos of the cyclist laying injured in the road show him wearing all black, no lights on his bike, on a very shaded road.  When I asked him about it, he said ‘well there was a white stripe on my shirt.’    Really?   On a shade-covered road where you’re in black, an oncoming driver is supposed to see ‘a white stripe’ on your shirt?  He may have had the right-of-way but he should have done more to stop the driver in her tracks – before she struck him!   (He’s since recovered and is cycling again, but now with bright colored, reflective shirts, flashing  lights, front and rear, and a lighted bike helmet!)    He learned his lesson.  That’s not to say that you won’t ever get hit by a car, but the odds are far lower when an oncoming vehicle can easily spot you at a distance.

More than 1,000 cyclists are killed every year.  Don’t be 1 of them.

Bicyclists, joggers and walkers:   Please –> Be Seen!    Black may be a cool fashion statement, but not when you can’t be seen in it!