While the majority of car accidents involve only motor vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists are involved in a fair number of crashes as well. In many ways, these are vastly more dangerous accidents since these people have limited protection and can be seriously injured. If two cars collide at 20 miles per hour, there is a good chance that no one will be hurt. However, the same accident could be fatal if the car struck a pedestrian or a cyclist.
In fact, when looking at the statistics for 2013, it can be seen that thousands of deaths occurred this way across the United States. Those on foot were actually in more danger, as 4,735 pedestrians were killed in accidents. Cyclists also saw a significant amount of risk, though, with 743 deaths.
If you run the numbers out, this means that on average, more than a dozen people were killed in this manner every single day.
In some ways, the trends have been getting better. There were 4,901 deaths for pedestrians all the way back in 2001, so the drop to 4,735 in 2013 was a positive one -- especially when considering the increase in population in more than a decade. However, some numbers were still fairly bleak. Around 66,000 injuries occurred in 2013. This means that a pedestrian was hurt by a motor vehicle just about every eight minutes.
With its warm weather, California is a great place for biking. However, that means higher accident totals here than in many other states. If you've been injured or have lost a loved one in such a crash, make sure that you know your legal rights.
Source: Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center, "Safety Tips for Bicyclists," accessed May. 15, 201