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Cars vs. Bicycles: Do I Have the Right of Way?

April 2, 2017 By bridgelawadmin

Cars vs. Bicycles: Do I Have the Right of Way?

The State of Utah requires all motorists to have a valid driver’s license. But anyone can ride a bicycle. It’s not uncommon to see people riding their bikes on the same streets with cars and trucks in Salt Lake City. Although you do not need a license to ride a bicycle. It is critical to know the basic rules of the road. One of the most confusing is who has the right of way at an intersection. In far too many cases, the wrong decision can quickly turn deadly.

The Need For Better Driver Education

Most motorists in Salt Lake City haven’t taken a driver’s test since passing their high school driver’s education class. But while most of these classes place an emphasis dealing with their fellow drivers on the road, many overlook the importance of obeying the laws when it comes to cyclists and pedestrians. As a result, many people have suffered catastrophic injuries or have been killed.

How to Handle Busy Intersections

First, it is important to understand bicycles are considered vehicles and must comply with the same traffic laws as cars and trucks. Depending on the traffic scenario, people on bicycles can either give or receive right of way at an intersection. Although the traffic rules are the same for everyone, people on bikes are in much higher risk to suffer serious injuries or death. According to statistics compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Commission, nearly 45% of bicycle accident collisions occur at intersections. Many are due to confusion on who has the right of way. There are generally two types of intersections–signaled intersections and intersections without signals. Vehicles signaled to move have the right of way, regardless of whether it is a car, truck or bicycle. But the rules can sometimes get a little more complicated when it comes to non-signaled intersections. Here are some important things to remember.

All vehicles in a lane without a stop sign have the right of way.

● If a bicycle and car are both at stop sign, the first vehicle that enters the intersection has the right of way. However, make sure the other vehicle has come to a complete stop.
● If two vehicles arrive at a stop sign at the same time, the vehicle to the right of the driver will have the right of way

Determining Personal Injury Liability

When a person has been injured in a bIcycle accident due to the negligence of others, they are entitled to seek compensation to cover damages, medical bills, property loss along with their pain and suffering. While many bike accidents are the result of right of way violations, some cases are not always easy to determine. For example, one driver may be completely unaware of the other vehicle or the other person’s negligence. In these cases, the court will determine liability based on which party displayed more reckless behavior.

A Salt Lake City Bicycle Accident Attorney Can Help

It only takes one mistake by a motorist to cause a bicycle accident. It can lead to devastating injuries along with enormous medical expenses. It is important for accident victims to understand their rights and to seek representation from a personal injury attorney that can help recover the settlement they deserve. Christian Burridge understands the challenges facing those who have been injured in accidents. He utilizes a compassionate and comprehensive approach to help place each client in the best position to succeed. To learn more, contact the Christian Burridge Personal Injury Law Firm, and schedule a consultation to discuss your case.