If you are cycling in the beautiful state of Pennsylvania, it's essential to be aware of the statewide bicycle laws, potential risks, and the legal steps to take if you're involved in a bicycle accident. The Law Offices of Anthony Urban is here to guide you through this crucial information, helping you understand your rights, stay safe, and protect yourself in case of an accident
Statewide Bicycle Laws in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania boasts an impressive network of scenic bike trails and cycling communities. To ensure safe cycling for all, the state has established a set of laws and regulations that govern bicycle use. Here are some key statewide bicycle laws in Pennsylvania:
- Helmets: In Pennsylvania, helmets are required for cyclists under the age of 12. However, wearing a helmet is strongly recommended for all cyclists, regardless of age, for your safety. Hand signals should be used when turning as well.
- Riding on Roadways: Bicycles are considered vehicles in Pennsylvania, which means cyclists must follow the same rules as motorists. This includes obeying traffic signals, signs, and lane use.
- Bike Lanes and Paths: When available, cyclists should use marked bike lanes and paths. If there are no bike lanes, cyclists should stay as far to the right as possible on the roadway.
- Lights and Reflectors: Bicycles must be equipped with front lights and rear reflectors if you're riding between sunset and sunrise. These measures enhance your visibility and safety.
Yearly Bicycle Accident Statistics in Pennsylvania
To emphasize the importance of adhering to bicycle laws and promoting safety, let's take a look at some yearly bicycle accident statistics in Pennsylvania:
- In 2020, there were 1,363 reported bicycle accidents in the state.
- Of these, 23 resulted in fatalities, and 1,253 resulted in injuries.
- These statistics serve as a reminder of the potential dangers cyclists face and the importance of obeying traffic laws to minimize risk.
What to Do After a Bicycle Accident
If you find yourself involved in a bicycle accident with a vehicle, it's essential to know the steps to take:
- Seek Medical Attention: First and foremost, ensure your health and safety. Seek medical attention for any injuries, no matter how minor they may seem.
- Contact Police to Complete a Report: Contact the local authorities to file a police report. Documenting the incident is crucial for any potential legal action.
- Gather Information: Exchange contact and insurance information with the driver involved in the accident. Collect witness statements, if possible.
- Document the Scene: Take photos of the accident scene, including vehicle damage, your bicycle, and any road conditions that may have contributed to the accident.
- Contact an Attorney: Reach out to an experienced attorney who specializes in bicycle accidents. Legal guidance is vital to protect your rights and seek compensation for damages.
The Importance of Hiring an Attorney
When it comes to bicycle accidents, hiring an attorney can make a significant difference in your case. An experienced attorney can:
- Evaluate the details of your case and determine liability.
- Navigate complex insurance claims including limited tort exceptions.
- Negotiate on your behalf for fair compensation.
- Provide legal representation in case of a lawsuit.
Sharing the Road in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania law emphasizes the importance of sharing the road with bicyclists. Motorists are required to:
- Leave at least four feet of space when passing a bicyclist.
- Yield the right of way to cyclists at intersections.
- Be cautious and aware of cyclists on the road.
- Use mirrors before turning, changing lanes, or opening car doors when parked.
Remember, cyclists have a right to use the road just like any other vehicle. Respect for these laws and rules is key to ensuring the safety and well-being of everyone on the road.
At the Law Offices of Anthony Urban, we're here to assist you if you've been involved in a bicycle accident in Pennsylvania. Our experienced team is dedicated to protecting your rights and helping you receive the compensation you deserve. We encourage all cyclists to stay informed, obey the law, and take the necessary precautions to ensure their safety on the road. If you ever need legal assistance following a bicycle accident, don't hesitate to reach out to our bike accident lawyers at Urban Law. Contact us today.Your safety and legal rights are our top priorities.