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Nicolet Law managing attorney Russell Nicolet

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The Surprising Link Between Bicycle Fatalities and SUVs

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The Surprising Link Between Bicycle Fatalities and SUVs

Helmet in the street after a bicycle accident in front of the driver and victim talking

As every seasoned cyclist knows, riding in traffic can be a heart-pounding ordeal – and not in a good way. Despite frequent public safety campaigns, far too many drivers still aren't accustomed to sharing the road. Inattention is rampant. "I just didn't see them!" is a common refrain in the aftermath of an accident.

When it comes to accident statistics, there's good news and there's bad. The good: Bicycle accidents have decreased significantly in recent years. The bad: Fatalities have drastically increased.

Although the total number of cycling accidents is down, fatal accidents have risen nearly 40 percent in the last decade. The same is true for fatal pedestrian accidents.

Why so many deaths?

Experts have pondered various reasons for the increase, from a rise in new (and inexperienced) cyclists to lack of infrastructure to increased driver distractions. Cellphone use behind the wheel is certainly a contributing factor.

Another surprising contributor? The composition of vehicles on the road. SUVs have skyrocketed in popularity over the last decade. Increased fuel efficiency and high profit margins make them an attractive option for dealers and consumers alike. Last year alone, around 70 percent of new vehicle sales were SUVs.

But the prevalence of these bigger, heavier vehicles on the road means less chance of survival during a collision – especially when a pedestrian or bicycle is on the receiving end of all that force.

What about advances in safety technology?

Collision avoidance systems, blind-spot monitors, backup cameras and the like are intended to make cars safer. But they also create a false sense of security for overconfident drivers. Speeding and distractions – two of the leading causes of fatal accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration – remain temptations for irresponsible drivers. Overreliance on safety features can backfire, with life-altering consequences for those who happen to be in their path.

And all too often, it's cyclists who pay the price.

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SEE HOW NICOLET LAW MAKES A DIFFERENCE IN OUR CLIENTS’ CASES

CAR ACCIDENT

Offer before Nicolet Law
$50,000.00

CAR ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$1,200,000.00

SEMI-TRUCK ACCIDENT

Offer before Nicolet Law
$75,000.00

SEMI-TRUCK ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$700,000.00

SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT

Offer before Nicolet Law
$5,000.00

SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$180,000.00

SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT

Offer before Nicolet Law
$0.00 - denial

SLIP AND FALL ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$159,000.00

DRUNK DRIVING VICTIM

Offer before Nicolet Law
$0.00

DRUNK DRIVING ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$815,000.00

UTV ACCIDENT

Offer before Nicolet Law
$5,000.00

UTV ACCIDENT

Result with Nicolet Law 
$250,000.00
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12 locations in Wisconsin and Minnesota to serve you

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Wisconsin Locations:

EAU CLAIRE:

402 Graham Ave.
Suite 305
Eau Claire, WI 54701

Phone: 715-226-4155
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HUDSON:

517 2nd Street
Unit #205
Hudson, WI 54016

Phone: 715-226-4155
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LA CROSSE:

119 N 19th St S
La Crosse, WI 54601

Phone: 715-226-4155
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NEW RICHMOND:

1500 Madison Ave.
Suite 220
New Richmond, WI 54017

Phone: 715-226-4155
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RICE LAKE:
337 North Main Street
Rice Lake, WI 54868

Phone: 715-226-4155
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RIVER FALLS
215 S 2nd St #20
River Falls, WI 54022

Phone: 715-226-4155
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SUPERIOR:
1200 Tower Ave.
Superior, WI 54880

Phone: 715-226-4155
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WAUSAU:
408 3rd Street
Suite 303
Wausau, WI 54403

Phone: 715-226-4155
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Minnesota Locations:

DULUTH:
306 West Superior Street,
Suite 606 West
Duluth, MN 55802

Phone: 651-427-3331
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HIBBING:
Howard Court Bldg.
302 Howard Street, Suite 123
Hibbing, MN 55746

Phone: 651-427-3331
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MINNEAPOLIS:
225 South 6th Street
Suite 3900
Minneapolis, MN 55402

Phone: 651-427-3331
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WOODBURY:
724 Bielenberg Drive
Suite 126
Woodbury, MN 55125

Phone: 651-427-3331
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