A pothole is the result of a defective road structure. The presence of traffic and water causes the soil beneath the surface to weaken and therefore, creates a hole in the road. Potholes can do serious damage to a vehicle or bicycle but even more dangerously, they can result in a road traffic accident. The question: are potholes more dangerous for car drivers or cyclists?
Potholes are more common on rural roads where the upkeep is perhaps not as frequent or as thorough on urban sections of the motorway. Hitting a pothole at speed can do serious damage to the suspension of the vehicle and can result in a collision, and has in fact resulted in fatal collisions with cyclists travelling alongside. However, vehicles are designed with safety in mind. Occupants of a vehicle are in theory kept safe inside a solid and sturdy metallic structure which is designed to absorb impact. Coupled with additional safety features such as seatbelts and airbags, it would seem at first glance that potholes are less serious for drivers. Let’s have a look at cyclists.
In stark contrast to cars, bicycles are solid frames with very little in the way of suspension parts. It is unlikely that the average cyclist will be using a full-suspension MTB when travelling on road, which may help to absorb the impact. If a cyclist hits a pothole, they are likely to be thrown from the bike and into the path of traffic. The only advantage that a bicycle has is that is likely to hit a pothole at a lower speed than a car, perhaps mitigating the effects somewhat. Cyclists are also at a disadvantage in poor weather conditions such as low light and fog, whereas a car is equipped with headlights and fog lights, a cyclist may not see a pothole before it is too late.
Suffered an accident as the result of hitting a pothole?
If you’ve been involved in an accident that occurred as the result of hitting a pothole and it wasn’t your fault, whether you were a driver or cyclist, you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation. Contact Accident Advice Helpline today on 0800 689 0500 to find out how you could win a 100% no-win-no-fee* compensation claim for a bicycle or car accident that occurred within the last three years.
Date Published: April 28, 2015
Author: Accident Advice