After experts say headphones might have contributed to a woman’s death, there is a renewed conversation about whether it is dangerous for cyclists to wear earphones while riding. The woman lived in East Yorkshire, in the UK, far from California, but her tragic death has cycling publications everywhere discussing the dangers of distracted riding.
The woman was riding in a roundabout in the city when she noticed a truck heading towards her. It’s unclear what happened from there, but authorities think she was shocked by the truck and might have jumped. This might have caused her to fall off her bike. Authorities who examined the case determined that the driver was not to blame for the bicycle accident. They noted that her iPhone headphones and lack of a helmet could have been major contributors. It’s possible that the headphones distracted her from her surroundings, and that a helmet could have saved her life.
Distraction Can Be Dangerous for Cyclists Too
If you regularly ride in the city, you don’t need a reminder about the dangers of distracted driving. Everyone fears that driver on the phone who might veer through the bike lane and hit you. What about distracted riders, however? It can be just as dangerous to ride without your full attention on the road.
We have seen over time that these crashes can often be avoided if riders take precautions, such as wearing a helmet and avoiding distractions. Of course, building awareness about bicycle safety will not bring this woman back, but it might help others avoid the same fate. When you go for a ride, resist the temptation to engage in distracting activities like listening to music, and always wear your helmet. The stakes are just too high for you to take the risk.
Frederick M. Dudek is a San Diego bicycle accident lawyer and cycling enthusiasts who is passionate about improving bicycle safety and fighting on behalf of his fellow riders.