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Safety advocates predict more deadly bike-truck clashes ahead

The day of the drone-delivered product from Amazon appears to be somewhere over the horizon, if not the rainbow. That doesn't mean that the flow of packages to consumer doorsteps is likely to decline.

E-commerce continues to be a growing segment of the economy. As a result, a logical conclusion one can come to is that more delivery trucks, large and small, are going to be tooling around urban centers in North Carolina and the rest of the country. Where that's the case, there's also a greater risk of serious, perhaps deadly truck accidents.

Adding to the concern is that so many cities are doing what they can to promote bicycling not just as a recreational pastime but also as an eco-friendly means of commuting to work and school.

Readers may recall that just this past May, some in Fayetteville participated in the National Bike to School Day. The parents, teachers and students who were involved say they are looking to inspire greater adoption of bicycling and awareness to improve biking safety. For the just-ended celebration, riders made a point of following all the proper traffic laws. But they took precautions to use only low-traffic routes.

That was surely wise. According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the percentage of pedal-powered vehicles killed in traffic accidents has been steadily increasing, even as overall fatal accidents are declining. And predictions from experts are that that trend is likely to continue unless something is done about it.

Safety advocates are calling for a range of reforms to reduce accident rates. Suggestions include improved truck driver training, restricting truck sizes in some cases and better street design. They also call for tougher penalties when drivers do kill cyclists and pedestrians.

Shy of that, victims of such accidents should know that they can do something on their own to hold negligent truckers accountable. Consulting an experienced attorney is the way to start.

Source: Fairwarning.org, "Collision Course: With Wary Eye on Big Trucks, Bike Riders Seek Safe Space on City Streets," Bridget Huber, June 30, 2015

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Safety advocates predict more deadly bike-truck clashes ahead | Britton Law, P.A.