Personal injury Lawyer Matt Arnold answers the question: “I was involved in a motor vehicle accident with injuries. Do I need a lawyer?”
As a child, there is arguably no greater feeling of accomplishment and freedom than the moment you learn to ride a bike. From that moment, the world seems infinitely more accessible, and the desire to explore our communities on a larger scale is born. For many of us, this feeling stays with us into adulthood, at which time we are required to share the roads with cars and obey the rules of the road just like drivers. When either party acts in a negligent manner, the risk for personal injury goes up drastically.
To mitigate the risk to both drivers and cyclists, the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation has created guides meant to educate all types of travelers on the laws surrounding safe bicycle operation on state roadways. When a collision between a driver and a cyclist results in personal injury to the cyclist, it is important for all parties to understand the role of negligence if the situation leads to the decision to pursue litigation.
In cases involving automobile and bicycle collisions, consultation with an experienced local personal injury attorney is always the preferred course of action. Our legal professionals will help accident victims understand North Carolina’s personal injury laws as they relate to their unique case. There are, however, some general points of information regarding bicycle safety rules in North Carolina that all residents should know.
Required Bicycle Safety Equipment in North Carolina
North Carolina state law requires cyclists and passengers under the age of 16 to wear an approved safety helmet. A parent who knowingly allows their child to break this law can be considered negligent in the eyes of the court. While the fine for not adhering to this law is minimal, the risk of personal injury when not wearing a helmet is significant. While there is no requirement for adults over 16 years old to wear a helmet, it is strongly advised by the NCDOT.
Safe Bicycling Behavior in North Carolina
The law in North Carolina also sets forth clear guidance when it comes to how cyclists should behave on the road. For instance, cyclists in North Carolina are required to ride in the same direction as other traffic. Additionally, the cyclist must ride as close as reasonably possible to the right-hand edge of the roadway, except when passing another vehicle, preparing for a left turn, or avoiding a dangerous obstacle.
North Carolina residents may be surprised to learn that in regards to biking while intoxicated, a bicycle is not considered on the same level as automobiles. However, the NCDOT warns that impaired cycling can account for a significant number of incidents that result in personal injury. In addition, cycling while under the influence may be considered reckless operation depending on the individual circumstances.
When to Contact an Attorney
When cyclists are involved in collisions with motor vehicles, it can be difficult to prove who was at fault. For years, the attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC have been helping residents in Charlotte and throughout North Carolina navigate this complex legal process. Call (704) 370-2828 to receive a video, phone or in-person consultation with our lawyers to explore your legal options or fill out our contact form. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.
The skilled personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to maximizing the financial recovery and obtaining justice for every personal injury client injured by another party’s negligence. The issues our personal injury clients may be facing include, but are not limited to, slip and fall injuries, wrongful death, product liability, catastrophic injuries, dog bite claims, car and truck accident injuries, motorcycle injuries, traumatic brain injury (TBI), nursing home negligence, spinal cord injury, boating accidents, and defective medical device injury. Our personal injury attorneys understand the devastating impact such an injury can have on a person’s life, and that the effects so often go beyond physical pain and suffering. The personal injury attorneys at Arnold & Smith, PLLC are dedicated to helping clients determine the strength of their claims, and to aggressively pursuing the means necessary to achieve the best possible end result for each client’s particular situation.
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