More and more auto accidents happen at intersections, and as recent statistics show, these are the result of collisions between cars and bikes. If you have been the victim of such a collision, you should know what liability is actually involved in such incidents.
When is a cyclist at risk of colliding with a car?
If you have been riding a bike in the city, you know that only a small portion of a cyclist’s travel route includes intersections. Recent statistics show that basically a little over 10 percent of bicycle accidents involve a collision with a car; but of these, 45% take place in intersections. Also, the majority of bicycle accidents -involve only the cyclist, who loses control of the bike and crashes.
Why is an intersection a dangerous place for a cyclist?
Vehicles often underestimate the speed of a bike and this is one of the most important reasons. Also, cars often don’t expect bikes to be on the road so car drivers aren’t watching for bikes, increasing the danger of auto accidents happening.
Visibility is another matter. Even if cars are on the lookout for bikes, they sometimes just don’t see them because bikes are smaller and can blend into the background.
What can a cyclist do to avoid collisions at intersections?
There are ways to minimize the risk of being hit by a car. First of all, a good cyclist would need to make everything in their power to maximize their visibility, understand the rules of the road, learn to recognize some of the most dangerous intersection hazards, and take safety precautions when approaching and riding through an intersection. Increasing the visibility of the bike and cyclist is done by using front and rear lamps, reflective clothing, and brightly colored clothing. Also, cyclists are legally required to be on the lookout and to learn how to execute emergency maneuvers in order to avoid collision.
What are the legal liability provisions in car collisions?
It is not always easy to determine who the guilty party in such an incident is. However, cyclists who don’t follow road rules or don’t keep a proper lookout might be deemed responsible for an accident. In order to avoid liability for an accident after being hit by a car, cyclists must understand both the basic legal rules of liability and the rules of the road.
Legally speaking, in nearly every state a bicycle is considered to be a “vehicle” and therefore, just like motorists, cyclists must follow the rules of the road. The first and most logical thing in what regards liability is that it usually boils down to who had the right-of-way: the bike or the vehicle.
There are many legal considerations that come into play depending in such traffic incident, and many depend on the type of intersection and overall traffic incidents. This is why, if you have been involved in an auto accident involving a vehicle collision, the first logical step would be to contact a specialized attorney who can help with your liability case.