There are many people who ride bicycles in New Mexico for fun, for exercise or for other reasons like trying to do their part to help the environment or because it is the most reliable transportation a person has to get to and from where they need to go. However, bicycling carries with it some risks for those who choose to take this mode of transportation.
Bicycles are smaller than other vehicles, which can make them harder for other motorists to see. Moreover, even when they are wearing appropriate safety gear, bicyclists just don't have the same amount of protection in the event of an accident. Finally, some motorists just do not have the regard or respect for bicyclists.
According to the most recent statistics, New Mexico had almost 300 traffic deaths on its roads overall. Among these, seven of the deaths involved bicyclists. In other words, about 2 percent of those who died in motor vehicle accidents in New Mexico were on bicycles.
Compared with the rest of the country, New Mexico was about average in terms of fatal bicycle accidents. For every 1 million people in New Mexico, 3.4 died in bicycle accidents. To put this in perspective, the states where fatal accidents were most common had fatality rates of over 7 per 1 million.
Still, the fact that any bicyclist winds up dying while on a ride or just on their way to work is not acceptable, particularly when the accident happens because of distracted driving or some other behavior that is careless and entirely preventable. The families of victims in these sorts of cases may have legal options to pursue compensation from those drivers whose negligence caused the accident.