The Washington DC area is a wonderful place for pedestrians and cyclists. There are so many places to see and things to do, especially in the District itself–it really makes for a beautiful walk or bike ride. But, as we see way too often, the DC metro area is also a dangerous place to ride a bike.
There are quite a few reasons bike accidents in DC can occur, including too many unprotected bike lanes, the likelihood of getting ‘doored,’ existing bike lanes that are blocked continuously, and reckless and/or impaired drivers.
The Worst Streets for Bike Riders
According to the research of collision data from August 2016 to August 2019 performed by WUSA9, these are the most dangerous streets in Northwest DC for cyclists and pedestrians:
- 14th Street NW between H and L Streets: 30 collisions between drivers and pedestrians.
- 14th Street NW between Harvard and Quincy Streets in Columbia Heights: collisions involving 34 pedestrians and 52 cyclists.
- And the most dangerous was the U Street corridor (between V and T Streets to the north and south and 15th and 9th Streets to the west and east): 68 collisions between drivers and cyclists and 65 collisions with pedestrians.
- One other notoriously dangerous spot for pedestrians and cyclists is 17th Street NW in Dupont Circle, where lengthy pedestrian crossings, barely existent bike lanes, insufficient loading zones, and a heavy amount of pedestrian, cycling, and motorist traffic lead to accidents as well as plenty of near-misses.
In the U Street corridor, a significant issue is the traffic congestion and nightlife activity, which leads to an increase in impaired drivers as well as ride-share vehicles. Across Northwest DC, blocked bike lanes (which is illegal in DC) force cyclists to ride in traffic lanes, exponentially increasing the chances of an accident.
Working on Solutions
The District Department of Transportation is using the same data to create improvements in traffic flow, which should help create a safer area for cyclists. Some of these solutions include designated parking for ride-share vehicle pick-ups and drop-offs, so they don’t park in bike lanes; creating designated bus lanes throughout the district to help thin traffic congestion; and the addition of more than 20 miles of protected bike lanes by 2022, something the city sorely needs to help protect cyclists.
Bike Accident in DC
Should you be involved in a bike accident in DC or in the metro area, there are a couple of things you should do. First, get medical attention–your health is first and foremost.
Next, contact the DC bike accident attorneys with The Lapidus Law Firm. Our experienced lawyers know pedestrian and bicycle laws inside and out and will help you determine whether you have a case. And if we take your case, we will fight for a fair, reasonable settlement for any injuries, lost wages, and property damage that may result from your accident.
You have rights as a cyclist. So, if you’re in a bike-related accident, call The Lapidus Law Firm at (202) 785-5111 or (301) 852-7500 to set up a free, no-obligation consultation.