Texas Bicycle Helmet Laws
Bicycle accidents can be very severe. Cyclists do not have the same protection as a motor vehicle, and our Houston bicycle accident lawyers know collisions between a car and a bicycle can be catastrophic, often leading to severe injuries and fatalities. Protective equipment, such as helmets, can help keep cyclists safe on the road.
Currently, Texas does not have a statewide helmet law and it is legal for cyclists of all ages to ride a bicycle without a helmet. However, municipalities often enforce helmet requirements for minors.
Texas Bicycle Accident Statistics
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, bicycle accidents are unfortunately common throughout the state. The agency provides the following statistics on accidents involving cyclists.
- In 2019, a total of 2,547 crashes involving cyclists occurred on Texas roads.
- 68 cyclists died from accident-related injuries in 2019.
- 312 cyclists sustained serious injuries in an accident during 2019.
- 1,102 cyclists sustained non-incapacitating injuries as a result of their accidents.
- Only 183 bicycle accidents in 2019 did not result in injuries to the cyclist.
Does Texas Have a Bicycle Helmet Law?
Texas does not have a bicycle helmet law. However, cities and towns in Texas have the power to enact helmet ordinances within their jurisdiction. For example, the city of Houston requires all children under the age of 18 to wear a helmet while riding a bicycle. Austin also requires children to wear bicycle helmets. In both of these cities, these requirements do not apply to adults.
Although Texas does not have a statewide helmet law, it is clear that bicycle helmets save lives. Studies show that helmets can reduce the risk of head and brain injury for cyclists by as much as 88%. To better prevent severe, disabling injuries, it is important for cyclists to wear a helmet whenever they are cycling.
What to Do After a Texas Bike Accident
Bicycle accidents can occur at any time, in any place. Even if you follow all traffic laws, wear the appropriate protective equipment, and remain alert of your surroundings, you can suffer severe, debilitating injuries due to a driver’s negligence. In these situations, it is important to protect yourself, preserve evidence, and explore your options for financial compensation.
- Call 911 as soon as possible. Speak to the responding officer and ask for his or her name so you can find the police report on a later date.
- Seek emergency medical attention, even if you feel like you do not have any injuries. Save all records related to your treatment and injuries.
- If you can move without injury or danger, take photographs of the accident scene, your injuries, damage to your bike, and any traffic signs and signals in the area.
- Exchange contact information with the at-fault driver and collect his or her insurance details. Keep your interaction with the driver as brief as possible.
- Speak to any witnesses who saw the accident and collect their contact information. These individuals could provide testimony in your future claim.
After you seek medical attention, do not speak to an insurance representative. Instead, contact an accident lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options. Your attorney can guide you through the insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit process, helping you hold the at-fault driver accountable for his or her actions.