Bicycling is one of the main forms of recreation around the country. And while most people use their bikes solely for recreation and exercise, a growing number of people use them to commute to work and run errands daily.
More and more people, generally in large, busy cities, are riding their bikes more often. And while it’s a great thing, as fewer cars are on the road and less pollution is released into the environment, it doesn’t come without risks.
Accidents aren’t uncommon. Bike theft isn’t uncommon either. Many cyclists wonder if there is such thing as cycling insurance.
Many larger cities, such as Portland and Minneapolis, are very cyclist-friendly. They have invested heavily in cycling infrastructure, including extensive bike lanes.
Unfortunately, most cities aren’t that lucky for cyclists. Cities in Florida haven’t quite reached those levels yet. South Florida can actually be a dangerous place to ride.
Keep reading to find out if you need cycling insurance and what to do in case of an accident or theft.
Is Cycling Insurance a Real Thing?
Yes, bicycle insurance is a real thing. Most casual cyclists don’t even know about it. If your bike only costs a few hundred dollars or less, and if you primarily ride on bike paths, you usually don’t worry about accidents or theft.
But for avid cyclists, their bikes can cost a lot more money. It isn’t uncommon for those who are serious about cycling to spend more than $10,000 on an ultralight, carbon fiber bike.
Many people buy $10,000 cars and get them insured. Shouldn’t you consider insuring your bike if it’s worth that much?
Cycle insurance is a stand-alone insurance policy. It’s a specialty insurance policy that most people won’t need but is available for expanded protection for those who cycle frequently.
Home insurance policies offer varying degrees of protection for bicycles. Generally, they will only cover theft when someone steals a bike from your home. Some policies may cover theft from other locations or medical payments from accidents.
Why You Need Cycling Insurance
There is a lot that can happen to you and your bike when you are out in the world. You can only control so much.
When you cycle to work, the store, or a restaurant, the best storage option would be to bring it inside or have a friend wait outside with the bikes. But more often than not, you need to lock your bike up.
In many big cities, thieves have specialized tools that can cut through locks in seconds. Theft insurance is important if you value your bike.
And of course, when you are riding on the road, or even in bike lanes, vehicles pose the biggest threat. You can ride as responsibly as possible, but if a driver isn’t paying attention, you may be at risk.
While injuries from bicycle accidents have shown signs of decline, they still totaled almost 300,000 in 2018.
On top of that, cyclists can even be the cause of harm or injury to others. If you are turning at an intersection on a wet road, it’s possible to slide out of control and into traffic. If a driver crashes their car because of you, they may hold you responsible.
You may have to cover medical costs and damage costs related to the accident you caused.
Bicycling Insurance Coverages
Bicycling insurance can cover many different things related to cycling. It can cover the cost of bicycle damage or theft. If a bike is beyond repair after an accident, your policy may cover the total cost of replacement.
If your bike is damaged or missing when you attend a race or are cycling away from home, you can rent a bike and have the fee covered by insurance. If your spare parts or cycling apparel, which can also be quite expensive, sustain damage or are stolen, that loss can be covered as well.
Liability insurance is one of the most important aspects of cycling insurance should you cause damage or harm while cycling.
Bicycle insurance will cover medical payments up to your policy limit. You might not be injured by someone else but may experience a natural accident, such as hitting a large pothole or sliding out of control.
If a car hits you and the driver doesn’t have insurance to cover their liability, you can be covered up to your limit for this as well.
Bicycle Insurance Cost
Your bicycle insurance cost is really up to you. You can choose coverage amounts as high or low as you feel comfortable with and pay an annual rate accordingly.
Popular cycling insurance plans offer liability coverages between $25,000, $50,000, and $100,000.
Medical payment coverage is generally available in limits such as $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, $7,500, and $10,000.
Other coverages are available as well, such as competitive fee reimbursements, rental coverage, roadside assistance, and more.
The average bicycle insurance cost is between $250 and $400 per year. Compared to the cost of many high-end bicycles these days, along with rising medical costs, this is very reasonable for any serious cyclist.
What Happens When You Are in an Accident?
So what happens if someone steals your bike or you are in an accident while riding your bike and you don’t have insurance? Those in Florida can contact Vivo Law, the leading Florida bicycle accident attorney.
As an attorney, lifetime Florida resident, and avid cyclist, Mr. Vivo knows the rights of cyclists, as well as how to protect them and advocate for them.
While cycling insurance helps when accidents or damage is natural or caused by yourself or your equipment, most injury and damage is sustained by others.
As such, you may be entitled to compensation and need to hire a lawyer that understands road and cycling law.
What to Do After an Accident?
If you have been injured or your bike has sustained damage in an accident, you should take action right away. Even if you don’t have cycling insurance, you still have options. Your first step is to talk to a lawyer and learn about what you can do.
Contact VIVO today for a free consultation. Let us support you and fight for a better cycling environment in South Florida.