Sanford Bicycle Accident Lawyer

Nestled on the southern shores of Lake Monroe near the gorgeous St. Johns River, Sanford is an idyllic town in central Florida. While it does not get the same tourist traffic as cities on the shore, plenty of visitors still flock to the area to see the lake, enjoy the historic buildings, shop and dine on the riverwalk, and enjoy a surprising amount of culture. For visitors and residents alike, Sanford is a great town for cycling. The cultural center is a small two-block radius, all located within an easy biking distance from other areas of town.

Of course, an increase in cyclists means an increase in cycling accidents. Florida is one of the nation’s most dangerous states for cyclists, and the gorgeous weather and thriving tourism industry are actually part of the reason. The tourism industry leads to more cyclists on the road. It also leads to people unfamiliar with the area driving or biking — increasing the risk of personal injuries. Bicycle accidents are particularly risky for cyclists, often resulting in catastrophic injuries like TBI or damage to the spine and neck.

If you or a loved one has been injured in one of these wrecks, contact a Sanford bicycle accident lawyer from our law firm.

Understanding Florida’s Bike Laws

Florida Statutes § 316.2065 provides that cyclists must generally follow the same rules as drivers. The exception is that cyclists are considered pedestrians when riding their bikes on sidewalks. However, other pedestrians have the right of way on sidewalks, so cyclists have a unique position in Florida transportation laws.

While traffic laws generally apply to cyclists, there are specific rules that apply to bikers and passengers:

  • When a bike path is available, cyclists should remain in it.
  • When there is no bike path, cyclists should stay in the far righthand lane unless they need to be in another lane to make a turn.
  • Cyclists can ride alone or two abreast as long as they do not block traffic.
  • A bike can only carry as many people as it has seats unless the people are children using specialized equipment.
  • Just like driving, it is a crime to cycle while intoxicated.

Bike riders must follow special equipment rules. Riders 15 and younger must wear a helmet, while riders 16 and over can elect to ride without a helmet. All riders must be able to listen to traffic — they can wear headphones but only use one of them. Their bikes must have brakes that can stop from a speed of 10 miles an hour within 25 feet. If cycling at night, the bicycle must have front lights and rear reflectors.

All of these laws should make Sanford cyclists safer. However, the absolute risk to cyclists is driver negligence. Even if a cyclist is not fully complying with the law, there is a good chance that they can recover in a lawsuit for their injuries. The state’s comparative negligence law, Fla. Stat. § 768.81, provides that the court’s judgment will be based on each party’s share of the liability and that a person cannot recover if they are more than 50 percent responsible for their own injuries. A bicycle accident attorney in Sanford could assess your accident to determine whether you will be able to recover.

Bike Accident Liability

While cyclist negligence plays a role in some bike wrecks, motorists are more often to blame. Some things that drivers do to cause collisions with cyclists include speeding, distracted driving, tailgating, blocking the bike lane, aggressive driving, failing to see the cyclist, and opening doors in front of cyclists. Any of these things can lead to a finding that the driver had the majority of the responsibility in an accident.

However, the facts are always critical. Other issues can contribute to bike wrecks, as well. Bad weather, road conditions, cyclist inattention, and cyclists who fail to file traffic rules all contribute to accidents. A Sanford lawyer who handles bicycle accidents could provide guidance regarding a specific situation and identify damages to file suit over.

Talk to a Sanford Attorney About Compensating for Bicycle Wrecks

Bicycle wrecks can be more complex than car wrecks. While cyclists must follow the same rules as motorists, they are much more vulnerable in the event of an accident. When this occurs, the cyclist may not be in the position to describe their version of an incident, which can place them at a disadvantage. Fortunately, a Sanford bicycle accident lawyer knows how to deal with this issue and other challenges that can arise in legal proceedings.

Schedule a free consultation to find out more about your rights and remedies after being injured.

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    Sanford Bicycle Accident Lawyer