Tragically, a bicyclist was hit by a suspected drunk driver on Euless Boulevard last Sunday. The bicyclist was hit by an SUV, and remains in very critical condition. The man was unidentified for several days before police released a photo of him, and he was identified shortly thereafter.

It’s always tragic when an accident involving a drunk driver occurs, because it could so easily have been prevented. Although there is probably nothing this bicyclist could have done to avoid the accident, there are ways to try to stay safer while biking in Dallas. Unfortunately, according to the NHTSA, between 600 and 800 bicyclists were killed in U.S. traffic accidents each year between 1998 and 2008.

First, be sure to wear a properly fitted helmet. Many of those killed in biking accidents die due to head injuries. Also, make sure your bicycle is adjusted to fit your body. Is your bicycle in good working order? Do your brakes work? Are your tires inflated properly?

Second, it sounds like common sense, but don’t ride a bicycle if you are under the influence of alcohol. Tragically, alcohol is a factor in around one-third of accidents that result in bicycle fatalities in the U.S., either because the bicyclist or a driver was drinking.

Finally, be sure to be visible, alert and let others know of your intentions. Wear bright colors or neon when riding, even during the daytime. Put reflective tape or lights on your bicycle, especially if you plan on biking at night. Keep alert for the actions of other drivers and be ready to stop if necessary. Signal all turns or lane changes.

Bicycling can be a fun hobby and a great way to keep in shape, but it’s important to keep in mind that drivers may not always be alert to your presence. If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident in the Dallas area due to the negligence of another driver, contact Kris Barber, Dallas personal injury attorney, at 972-231-5800. He will advise you on whether you have a cause of action against the driver, and what your next steps should be.