Riding a bicycle carries many benefits. Not only is it an excellent form of exercise, but it can also “improve [your] strength, balance, and coordination” [Source: Better Health Channel]. Unfortunately, riding a bike is risky and even dangerous when done so in the roadway with other vehicles. The fact is, although bicyclists share the same rights and responsibilities as a motorist, drivers tend to disregard these rights by ignoring cyclists or interfering with their ability to ride safely.
Now because it is known that bicyclists aren’t exactly treated “fairly” while riding in the road with vehicles, there are certain laws that were put into place to protect these riders such as the John Paul Frerer Bicycle Safety Act. This act was enacted in 2010 and outlines many different guidelines both drivers and bikers must adhere to. Some of the laws that are included in this Act that bicyclists need to be aware of, especially those who have been involved in an accident recently, include:
- Motorists are required to “leave a safe distance of not less than three (3) feet between his vehicle and the bicyclist and shall maintain such clearance until safely past the bicycle.”
- It is “unlawful to harass, taunt or maliciously throw an object at or in the direction of any person riding a bicycle.”
- When a bicycle lane has been provided and is adjacent to a roadway, “the operator of a motor vehicle may not block the bicycle lane to oncoming bicycle traffic and shall yield to a bicyclist in the bicycle lane before entering or crossing the lane.”
- The operator of a motor vehicle “may pass a bicycle traveling in the same direction in a no-passing zone with the duty to execute the pass only when it is safe to do so.”
Now, these are only some of the laws outlined in the John Paul Frerer Bicycle Safety Act as there are also laws outlined in it that apply specifically to bicyclists. Not only do these laws apply when a biker is operating in the roadway, but also on a highway or on any “path set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.” It is important that both bicyclists and motorists obey these laws so that both occupants of the roadway can operate their modes of transportation safely.
A driver hit me while I was riding my bike in Jackson, MS. What should I do?
First and foremost, it is important that you seek medical care to treat any injuries you may have sustained. The next thing you need to do is contact Jackson, MS personal injury attorney William E. Ballard. The reason you want to consult with a lawyer immediately after an accident is because you may be entitled to recover compensation from the driver who hit you, although you will need to prove he or she was negligent in some way. Proving negligence can be tricky as you must be able to cite which laws the other driver violated as well as be able to defend your case.
There are times where although it is obvious that a driver was at fault for causing an accident, he or she will still attempt to throw the blame on the other party. And in order to back up your case, you’re going to need a qualified and experienced personal injury lawyer in Jackson to help you with this. With that said, if you would like to meet with attorney William E. Ballard to learn more about how much your injuries might be worth and what you need to do to recover this amount, contact our office at 769-572-5111.
You can reach Ballard Law, PLLC. at:
108 S. President Street
Jackson, MS 39201