Road Cycling: Know the Law

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Silver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers have the important insight you may need

Silver Spring MD bicycle accident lawyersSilver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers know all too well that road cycling is undoubtedly an amazing form of both exercise and entertainment. On top of that, it is also an environmentally and economically friendly way to commute. Like anything else, however, there are some drawbacks to go along with all the fun. The biggest drawback is the risk of serious bodily injury from a crash, particularly if the crash involves another bicycle or, worse, a motorized vehicle. There are many ways to prevent crashes and stay safe, but one of the most important is to know the law in your locality and follow it religiously. Here are a few reasons why:

  • Local Rules Set Consistent Expectations for Riders and Drivers. Silver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers will likely inform you that rules in your locality for drivers and bikers put everyone on the same page regarding what they may expect from people with whom they share the road. For example, many localities have rules that require drivers to leave three feet of space while passing a cyclist. This gives cyclists confidence to drive on the road, and also provides a guideline for drivers regarding safe passing practices. Likewise, many local rules also require cyclists to ride to the side of the lane to make it easier for drivers to provide required passing space. Together, rules for cyclists and motorists work to set expectations and increase safety while traveling together.
  • Local Rules Are Drafted with Local Logistics in Mind. Silver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers may also inform you that the local rules are drafted and passed by local governments. These rules may be at the state level, but there are likely many city and county ordinances or rules also dealing with bikes on the road. When governing bodies pass these rules, they consider the local terrain, traffic patterns, and local driving habit to adapt the rules to specifically help citizens in your area. For example, in a locality with dedicated bike lanes, you are more likely to find ordinances that prohibit cyclists from riding on sidewalks. In a very hilly locality, you may find more rules about passing or which roads prohibit cyclists all together. Your local rules should suggest specific guidelines for your environment.  
  • In the Event of a Crash, Local Rules Will Affect Your Ability to Succeed in a Civil Lawsuit. If you are injured in a crash with a car or other vehicle, you may file a lawsuit with the help of Silver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers to recover monetary compensation. In this situation, your case will likely turn on whether you and the driver were obeying local traffic laws. If you failed to obey a traffic regulation, succeeding in your case will be much more difficult. In some states, it may even be impossible. Know the rules and follow them to protect your legal interests in the event of a crash.

If you have any questions or concerns about the local rules in your area, contact your local government or get involved in a community organization that supports road cycling. Also, remember, in the event of a crash, strongly consider reaching out to an experienced and qualified personal injury attorney. Competent Silver Spring, MD bicycle accident lawyers will be able to evaluate your case and help you get the compensation you deserve. Call Cohen & Cohen today to set up your free consultation.

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