September 4, 2014

Bicycle Accidents on the Rise in Palm Beach County

As a personal injury attorney helping injured victims of bicycle accidents in Palm Beach County, including an ongoing case against Palm Beach County and its contractors, attorney Joseph Lipsky is certainly encouraged that public servants are finally taking a further look at making our roadways safer for cycling enthusiasts.

We know too well that bike accidents in Palm Beach County rose by about twenty percent over the past couple of years. Those increasing number of bicycle accident statistics become too real as our office has seen an increase in the number of injured bicycle accident victims across Palm Beach County over the past 2 years. In hopes of stemming the rising tide of bicycle accident injuries, in addition to common sense solutions such as mandating helmet use and requiring lights on bikes, the county is contemplating increased marking of bike lanes and greater police enforcement of those laws already on the books.

While Florida’s laws demand bikes to have a head light type lamp and wheel reflectors, front lamp and reflectors, many cyclists choose not to follow the laws which are there to protect them. Other laws which many bike riders need to know of, which may too prevent personal injuries, include riders under 16 having to wear a helmet and the prohibition against using headphones. And contrary to many people’s beliefs, riders may use the sidewalk, but must yield to pedestrians.

Incredibly, Florida did away with many of its bike rider safety rules, which used to mandate that all riders, regardless of age, had to use a helmet. One of the suggestions the county is considering include narrowing car lanes to allow wider designated bicycle lanes. As a personal injury attorney who has helped injured accident victims in Palm Beach County, and across the State of Florida, for almost 25 years, Joseph Lipsky hopes the commission gives the proper consideration to bike riders’ safety.

March 3, 2014

Broward County To Make Roads Safer for Pedestrians and Bikes

Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer Joseph Lipsky knows, having represented hundreds of pedestrians and bicyclist who have been seriously injured by careless motorists, that our local roadways aren’t always meant to be shared. For that reason, we are happy to report that the Broward County commission recently implemented its Complete Streets policy, which requires future roads to be designed with increased safety measures to reduce the number of pedestrian accidents and bicycle accidents.

Some of the expected roadway improvements will include wider pedestrian and bike lanes, and open medians. According to the recently enacted rules, roads in Broward County will be constructed "to enable safe, convenient, and comfortable travel and access for users of all ages and abilities, regardless of their mode of transportation.” This needed trend toward protecting pedestrians follows similarly implemented rules by the Town of Davie and the cities of Sunrise, Pembroke Pines and Hollywood.

In order to facilitate wider bike lanes, car lanes will be narrowed, thereby providing bicyclists with an additional 3 feet of protection. Wider roadway medians will give pedestrians a safe place to wait for traffic to pass, if they are unable to fully cross a street before a light changes color.

Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney Joseph Lipsky certainly believes, that given the active South Florida community, in which many of our fellow residents enjoy walking and bike riding, that these roadway design changes will reduce the number of deadly car versus pedestrian and cyclist accidents.

December 9, 2013

Increase in Bicycle Accidents and Injuries in Fort Lauderdale

As a Miami bicycle accident attorney, Joseph Lipsky is sad to report that the number of bicyclists in Miami, Miami Beach, Hollywood and Fort Lauderdale injured while riding on our roadways has risen in the past two years. In fact, the number of bide riders who suffered personal injuries in accidents over the last 2 years has increased more than 40 percent in Broward County and by more than 20 percent in the Palm Beaches, according to data released by the FDHSMV.

Those percentages equal more than 750 bike riders in Broward County and more than 400 injured bike riders in the Palm Beaches. Part of the reason for the increase can be attributed to more bike riders on the road, for both exercise and as a primary means of transportation.

According to statistics, the amount people riding bikes to more has risen by more than 10 percent each of the last couple of years, with an almost 60 increase in Florida over the last 7 seven years. In fact, metropolitan Fort Lauderdale ranks within the top twenty nationally of cities with the greatest amount of bicycle riders commuting to work.

Not surprisingly, distracted driving, including cell phone use is one of the biggest threats to bike riders safety. However, bike riders must be mindful to follow traffic regulations including obeying stop signs and red lights. Additionally, bike riders must also take precautions such as avoiding placing themselves in danger when riding on sidewalks.

While an increase in dedicated bike lanes, and municipalities lowering speed limits in areas known to be frequented by bike riders may help in making cycling safer, Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer, Joseph Lipsky reminds cyclists of the safety benefits provided by wearing helmets, using lights while riding at night and having properly placed reflectors.

January 6, 2011

Two Bike Riders Die in Separate Car Accidents in Fort Lauderdale

As attorneys practicing personal injury law in Fort Lauderdale, we are again shocked by the deadly combination of bicycle riders, motorists and darkness. Sadly, two different early morning car accidents in which bike riders were struck resulted in the wrongful deaths of 2 cyclists.

Given the number of active bike riders in South Florida, it is not surprising that at least 20% of all wrongful death traffic accidents in Broward and Palm Beach Counties involved either pedestrians and cyclists. These recent fatalities occurred at or near Sunrise Blvd., west of Ft. Lauderdale.

Police urge bike riders to wait for the sun to rise before heading out on their bicycles. Given the vulnerability of cyclists in collisions with cars, we too urge those choosing to ride their bikes to exercise the utmost caution.