Bicycle accidents cause some of the most severe injuries of all personal injury cases. They also have the highest rate of injury because cyclists are so vulnerable when they’re struck by a 2,000-pound car or a 4-ton truck. When you or someone you love suffers injuries in a bicycle accident with another vehicle, an experienced bicycle accident lawyer’s services are important.
All personal injury cases are not alike. Bike accident cases require a special focus on the specific statutes and legal principles that apply to bicycle accident claims. The Law Firm understands North Carolina’s bicycle accident law and has the legal skill to fight for the highest compensation for your injuries.
Bicycle Accident Road Rules
As in other states, North Carolina enacted a slate of laws to govern the operation of bikes on public roads and to spell out the rights and responsibilities of both cyclists and motor vehicle drivers. The law entitles bicycles to be ridden on the road and requires that other drivers share the road with riders who are too often crowded off the road by automobile drivers who are either unaware of their obligations or who neglect to follow the rules.
Rules for Motor Vehicle Drivers — The following laws must be followed by motor vehicles:
- Passing a Bicycle20-149(a) A motorist overtaking a bicycle must pass at least two
(2) feet to the left of the bicyclist and must not move back to the right side of the highway until safely past the overtaken bicycle.
- Following a Bicycle Too Closely20-152(a) A motorist should not follow a bicycle more closely
than is reasonable and prudent, considering vehicle speed, amount of traffic, and the road conditions.
- Yielding to Bicycles at Driveways or Alleys20-173(c) The driver of a vehicle emerging from or entering an alley, building entrance, private road, or driveway shall yield the right-of-way to any bicyclist approaching on a sidewalk or walkway extending across an alley, building entrance, road, or driveway.
- Yielding at Right Turn on Red20-158(b)(2) At intersections, motorists must come to a complete stop and yield the right-of-way to pedestrians and other traffic-including bicycles-when making a right turn on red.
How Bicycle Accidents Happen
The laws listed above include rules for some of the main scenarios in which bicyclists are seriously injured or killed. Bicyclists are most often injured when cars or trucks drive so close to the curb when passing that the cyclist is struck or force off the road. Drivers who tailgate a bicycle because they think the bike is moving too slowly are another source of many cyclist deaths and disability. Backing out, turning, or driving forward from a driveway or side street directly into the path of an oncoming bike is another example of a driver failing to respect the cyclist’s right to the road.
Right turns by drivers who failed to check their passenger-side mirror for a bicycle approaching is a common cause of bicyclist injuries.
Fighting for Bicycle Accident Injury Victims
Car and truck drivers who hit bicyclists in a variety of scenarios are represented by big insurance company lawyers and adjusters. They work hard to shift the blame for the accident to the bike rider. In North Carolina, if the cyclist’s own negligence contributed to the accident, the injured bicycle rider could be barred from recovering compensation. The Law Firm has extensive experience fighting insurance companies and winning maximum financial settlements for our clients and their families.
Francis Babet loves pursuing excellence through writing and has a passion for Legal. He currently writes for The Clauson law Firm, a USA Based Law Firm that provides SSD, SSI, SSDI, Personal Injury, and Drugs and Devices. His work has been published on various sites related to Social Security Disability, Supplemental Security Income and more.