Preventing Bike Injuries: Rules of the Road

With spring in full effect, more cyclists are active on New Jersey roadways and unfortunately, car-bicycle accidents can be a more common occurrence. Motor vehicle-bike accidents often occur when cars or trucks are attempting to pass a cyclist on the road. If the automobile gets too close to the cyclist, they may hit them from behind or from the side.

Preventing Bike Injuries: Rules of the Road
New Jersey Motor Vehicle Cyclist Law and Bike Injuries

New Jersey drivers are required to keep a minimum of four feet away on roadways from bicyclists or pedestrians according to the Assembly Transportation Committee bill A1577/1600. Violators could face a fine of up to $500. The New Jersey law defines a “pedestrian” as anyone afoot and a “bicycle” as any two-wheeled human powered vehicle including skateboarders and roller skaters. If you have been hurt in a bike accident in New Jersey, it’s important that you consult with a New Jersey bike accident attorney to find out your legal options and get compensation for your injuries.

Smart Cycling

May is National Bike to Work Month, so we’ve compiled some tips from the League of American Bicyclists to stay safe on the New Jersey roadways. These five “Rules of the Road” are the core of their Smart Cycling program and will prepare you for a safe and fun bike commute no matter where you are riding:

Your safety and image of bicyclists depend on you. You have the same rights and duties as drivers. Obey traffic signals and stop signs. Ride with traffic; use the rightmost lane headed in the direction you are going.

Make your intentions clear to everyone on the road. Ride in a straight line and don’t swerve between parked cars. Signal turns, and check behind you well before turning or changing lanes.
Ride where people can see you and wear bright clothing. Use a front white light, red rear light and reflectors when visibility is poor. Make eye contact with others and don’t ride on sidewalks.
Anticipate what drivers, pedestrians, and other people on bikes will do next. Watch for turning vehicles and ride outside the door zone of parked cars. Look out for debris, potholes, and other road hazards. Cross railroad tracks at right angles.
Check that your tires have sufficient air, brakes are working, chain runs smoothly, and quick release levers are closed. Carry tools and supplies that are appropriate for your ride. Wear a helmet.

Legal Options

If you are a New Jersey cyclist who has been hit by a motor vehicle in Monmouth County or Ocean County and have been injured as a result, you have legal rights. You may file personal injury lawsuit to recover your losses and damages including medical expenses, lost wages, out of pocket expenses as well as pain and suffering. Call the personal injury attorneys at Villani & DeLuca P.C. today at 888-389-9533 for your free consultation.