Some people in the Las Vegas area ride bicycles for exercise purposes. They may even compete in races that either prioritize cycling or involve other feats of physical endurance, like triathlons. Plenty of other people rely on bicycles as an efficient means of personal transportation.
Whether someone bikes for exercise, fun or affordable transportation, they should be aware of the risk that comes with their choice. It only takes a second for a driver in a vehicle to make a mistake that could put a cyclist in the hospital or worse. According to a recent review of cycling collision statistics in Nevada, biking near Las Vegas is a particularly dangerous choice.
More crashes occur in Vegas than elsewhere in the state
Traffic density and driver behavior both play a role in the likelihood of a cycling crash occurring. Given that Clark County sees far more visitors than the rest of the state, it is unsurprising that the greater Las Vegas area is home to more severe bicycle crashes than the rest of the state combined.
Overall, cycling crashes account for 2.6% of Nevada’s traffic fatalities based on data collected between 2014 and 2018. Clark County saw the highest number of such collisions, as 31 of the 41 fatalities over that four-year period took place in Clark County. In other words, the area around Las Vegas was home to the vast majority of reported fatal cycling crashes.
How can cyclists protect themselves?
One of the first bits of advice given in defensive cycling classes is often for cyclists to act as though they are invisible. Those who bike very carefully by assuming that others will not notice them in traffic can reduce the likelihood of a tragedy affecting them and the people they love.
Cyclists may also want to routinely check their bikes for safety and invest in additional accessories that could help them draw attention in traffic. Aftermarket additions that can improve cyclist safety include illuminated turn signals and brake lights. Gear that is reflective or brightly colored can also help draw driver attention and reduce the likelihood of a cyclist getting hurt by a bigger vehicle in traffic.
Identifying and accounting for risk factors on public roads can help increase the safety of individuals and make them more confident about demanding justice if a crash does occur.