Over the past few years, the number of bicyclists has skyrocketed for a number of reasons, including a more urban-centered population and an increased importance placed on “green” modes of transportation. With this increase in the number of bicyclists on the road, local governments should be quick to add more bike lanes in order to allow safe travel. However, due to the slow-moving nature of government, the necessary bike lanes have yet to sprout up in most urban areas, and they are still no doubt years away in suburban areas.
This creates a situation in which bicyclists and motorists must coexist on the same road. Of course, this creates its difficulties for bicyclists and motorists alike. However, ultimately the duty will fall on both parties to ensure that everybody remains safe.
A bicyclist can do his or her part by wearing a helmet and following all posted traffic laws. It is important to remember that when a bicyclist is on the road, he or she is expected to obey all traffic signals and laws as though he or she were driving a car. The flip side of that requirement is that motorists are in turn required to treat bicycles as vehicles. This means giving bicycles ample room when passing, respecting a bicyclist’s right of way, and keeping an eye out for bicyclists on a daily commute.
A driver’s failure to operate their vehicle in a safe manner while around bicyclists can lead not only to a serious injury or death, but also to civil liability on the part of the driver. In Maryland, injured bicyclists can file lawsuits against negligent drivers, seeking compensation for their injuries. A successful accident victim may recover amounts for medical expenses and time away from work, as well as for any pain and suffering endured as a result of the accident.
Bicyclist in Critical Condition After Being Hit by Allegedly Drunk Driver
Earlier this month in Berkeley, California, one woman was in critical condition after she was struck by an allegedly drunk driver while she was riding her bike. According to one local news report, the woman was riding on the road, in her proper lane of travel, when she was struck by the passing motorist. Witnesses told reporters that the woman was dragged a short distance before the car came to a stop. Emergency crews had to lift the vehicle to get the woman out.
After she was removed from under the vehicle, emergency crews transported the woman to the hospital, where she remains in critical condition. Police conducted an investigation immediately after the accident and determined that the driver of the car may have been intoxicated. He was placed under arrest.
Have You Been Injured in a Maryland Bicycle Accident?
If you or a loved one has recently been involved in any kind of Maryland bicycle accident, don’t let people tell you it’s your fault for being on the road. That is not the law. In fact, drivers of cars and trucks are required to respect the rights of bicyclists to be on the road, and drivers can be held liable when their negligence causes an accident. Call 410-654-3600 today to set up a free consultation with a dedicated attorney.
More Blog Posts:
Aggressive Driving and Maryland Motorcycle Accidents, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published February 4, 2016.
Roadside and Shoulder Accidents in Maryland, Maryland Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Blog, published January 21, 2016.