Drivers: Do you know that you have to give bicycles on the road at least a 3-foot wide passing zone?
Bicyclists: Do you know that you have to ride responsibly and follow the rules of the road?
In 2015, 818 bicyclists were killed on U.S. roads - the highest total since 1995. However, only 3% of fatal bicycle crashes occur in bike lanes with the remainder on roads shared with other vehicles. Clearly, bicycling safety and preventing accidents is a mutual responsibility between bicyclists and motor vehicle drivers.
3-Foot Passing Zone - It's the Law in Indianapolis
Although Indiana is one of the few states that does not have a "safely passing bicyclists" law, Indianapolis does. When passing a bicycle, a vehicle's driver must pass at a safe distance of not less than 3 feet between the vehicle and the bicycle.
Also, in Indianapolis, cars and other vehicles are not allowed to stand or drive on bicycle pathways. Motor vehicles are only allowed on a bicycle lane to make a turn or enter or leave a private road, alley or driveway. When on a designated bicycle path or lane, these vehicles must yield to a bicyclist. (information from Indycog.org)
Tips for Bicyclists for Sharing the Road Safely
The League of American Bicyclists neatly outlines the Rules of the Road for safe bicycle riding:
- Follow the law and obey stop signs and traffic signals. Ride with traffic in the rightmost lane.
- Ride predictably so other vehicles and bikes know your intentions. Don't swerve - stay in a straight line. Signal all turns and check behind before changing lanes or making a turn.
- Ride where you can be seen. Avoid the blind spots at the sides of cars and trucks. Wear bright clothing and equip your bicycle with reflectors as well as a front white light and red rear light. Stay off of sidewalks.
- Ride defensively and anticipate what pedestrians, other vehicles, and other bikers will do. Stay outside the door zone of parked cars. Go across railroad crossings only at a right angle and watch roads for potholes and debris.
- Make sure your bike is in tip-top shape before heading out. Check tire inflation, brakes, and chains. Always wear a helmet.
Let Us Know If You Have Been Injured in a Bicycle Accident
If you or a family member has been injured in a bicycle accident in Indiana or any other type of accident, please the personal injury attorneys at Sevenish Law Firm. Our experienced attorneys will fight for the compensation that you deserve. Please call us at 800-278-9200 for a free consultation. We will fight to secure justice for you and your family.