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Number of accidents up along with the cycling season start

11 Apr 2022
All news

Number of accidents up along with the cycling season start

11 Apr 2022

When the spring sun sweeps the snow off the road, the streets are instantly filled with cyclists and electric scooter riders. Although the use of environmentally friendly transport is to be welcomed, drivers should be particularly careful during the first months of the season, as we have seen an increase in accidents among them each year during this period. For example, in the spring of last year, BTA Baltic Insurance Company AAS (hereinafter – BTA) paid twice as much in insurance indemnities cyclists, scooter riders and roller skaters involved in road traffic accidents as in March, April and May 2020.

According to insured event statistics, the most common cases when collisions between cars and bicycles or electric scooters occur are when cars leaving the yard or making a turn at an intersection. Not always do drivers notice the smaller motor vehicles or estimate their approaching speed correctly. On the other hand, cyclists themselves often ignore the turn signals on cars and keep on going when the car has already started its turning manoeuvre. Such collisions often result in several hundred euros worth damages to the car's body and injuries to cyclists – severe bruises and bone fractures.

Unfortunately, severe accidents sometimes also occur because of one road user ignoring the traffic rules. Such was an accident in May 2021, when a Volvo driver run into a cyclist while the latter was crossing an intersection at a green light. This led to a fracture of the ankle bone and a rupture of the two leg ligaments. The medical treatment costs of the injured cyclist ran over 15 thousand euros.

“Due to Latvia's climatic conditions, bicycles and scooters in winter are used by a relatively small circle of enthusiasts, but the pack of environmentally friendly transport users swells to a horde in no time in spring. The rising number of drivers and getting used to traffic again after a longer break unfortunately reflects in the accident statistics. Therefore, both cyclists should be twice as careful on the streets on their first road trips after the winter, and drivers, in the warmer months of the year, should keep in mind taking into account not only other cars but also smaller and more vulnerable vehicles,” mutual respect and coexistence emphasizes Kārlis Liepiņš, the Director of BTA Insurance Claims Handling Department. His words are confirmed by the first insurance claims received in 2022. A severe accident was registered in February when a cyclist came into the intersection under the red traffic light where he was knocked down by a Subaru. K. Liepiņš also points out the importance of being precautious and timely obtaining insurance for your bicycle. It will protect against unscheduled expenses to cover the repairs, as well as when the cyclist him or herself gets injured and needs medical assistance.

About BTA

BTA Baltic Insurance Company is one of the leading insurance companies in the Baltics, offering the broadest range of non-life insurance services in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. BTA employs more than 1,000 employees in the Baltics. The shareholder of BTA is Vienna Insurance Group AG with close to 200 years of experience in the insurance business. With about 50 companies in 30 countries and more than 25,000 employees, Vienna Insurance Group is a clear market leader in its Central and Eastern European markets, and takes care of more than 22 million customers. Vienna Insurance Group is the best-rated company of ATX, the leading index of Vienna Stock Exchange (since 1994) with a rating of A+ with stable outlook from Standard & Poor’s. Vienna Insurance Group works in close partnership with Erste Group – the largest retail bank in CEE.

Additional information:
Elīna Zvejniece
Marketing and Public Relations Department Director
BTA Baltic Insurance Company AAS



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