Mintz Law Firm
Bicycle Accident Lawyers in Colorado
In the State of Colorado, cars, trucks, and motorcycles aren’t the only vehicles on the roadways. Bicycling has become an increasingly popular means of getting from point A to point B for residents who are perhaps taking advantage of a fun, convenient, and relatively cheap mode of transportation. Not to mention that bikes provide a sense of individuality, a low environmental impact, and can be a healthy way of exercising. Nevertheless, bicycle accidents as a result of negligent motorists are all too common on Colorado’s increasingly crowded roadways.
Drivers who are careless, distracted, or negligent could cause a bicyclist to sustain life-altering injuries if they fail to share the road. A bicyclist is especially at-risk when you consider that they’re not protected by the same robust metal cage that shelters other drivers and passengers on the road. Because automobiles are bigger and faster, drivers tend to feel like they “own” the road and may not want to share it with bicyclists. This can lead to aggressive driving, bullying, and negligence, all of which can cause serious bicycle vs auto accidents.
Just because your bicycle isn’t powered by an engine doesn’t mean that you don’t have rights. If you’ve been injured in a bicycle accident, partner with an expert Colorado bicycle accident attorney who can fight for you. Here’s what you should know about Colorado’s bicycle laws and how a lawyer may be able to help protect your rights if you’ve been injured in an accident.
Understanding Your Rights as a Bicyclist in Colorado
The same basic rules of the road that apply to automobiles also apply to bicyclists. This means that fundamental regulations like keeping a safe distance from others in traffic, stopping at red lights, signaling when turning, and following street signs must be followed at all times. Many of these guidelines will get you ticketed if you don’t follow them. Too often, cyclists sustain injuries because they ride against the flow of traffic or without proper lighting at night.
However, there are also a number of state and local municipal laws, regulations, and ordinances that apply directly to the operation of bicycles on Colorado’s roads, sidewalks, and pathways. These are important for both bicyclists and automobile drivers to understand while on the road. We’ve broken down a few to keep in mind.
Automobile drivers are required to give bicyclists a minimum of a three-foot cushion when passing them on the road. Driver’s may also cross the centerline in order to pass a cyclist when it’s safe to do so.
In many areas, bike lanes are designated to ensure cyclist safety at all times. Where bike lanes don’t exist, bicyclists may ride as far right as is safe. Additionally, cyclists may ride as far left as is safe when riding on one-way roads with multiple lanes.
Passing Other Cyclists
Under Colorado law, bicyclists can pass one another or ride side-by-side so long as they maintain a three-foot cushion with automobiles and don’t impede the normal flow of traffic.
Anti-Harassment of Cyclists
Bicyclists are protected by law from being harassed in any way, including the throwing of any object at a cyclist or driving toward a cyclist in a dangerous manner.
Common Bicycle Accident Injuries in Colorado
Bicyclists are much more likely than other drivers on the road to suffer a wide range of serious injuries after an accident because of their lack of protection. Some of the most common injuries after a bicycle accident include:
- Broken bones
- Burns and road rash
- Chest injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord damage
- Wrongful death
Bicycle accidents occur so often in Colorado and nationwide for a variety of reasons. As more bicyclists are hitting the road, fewer are taking the time to become familiar with their legal obligations as a rider. Bicyclists who don’t understand Colorado bicycle laws and customs are more likely to impede traffic and cause an accident.
Likewise, when other drivers speed, refuse to yield, or fail to leave an appropriate cushion between a vehicle and bike, bicycle crashes are common. Additionally, many Colorado roads aren’t designed for bicycle transit and can thus be a dangerous place for cyclists. If you’ve been injured and feel as if a driver hasn’t followed Colorado’s bicycle laws, contact a Colorado bicycle accident lawyer as soon as possible.
Get in Touch With an Expert Bicycle Accident Attorney in Colorado
As bicycles have become an increasingly popular mode of transportation, Colorado has tried to add safer bike lanes and put forth legislation with the goal of improving safety for bicyclists. Unfortunately, many motorists still don’t know how to share the road. Drivers who are careless, distracted, or negligent could cause devastating—even fatal—injuries to cyclists.
If you’ve been injured in a bicycle vs auto accident as a result of a driver’s negligence or failure to follow the law, it’s important that you contact the experienced Denver car accident attorneys at Mintz Law Firm who may be able to help you recover the compensation you need. As cycling enthusiasts and empathizers with more than 150 years of combined experience, our legal team is passionate about fighting the rest of the battle on your behalf. For a free consultation, call (303) 462-2999 or complete our online contact form today.