Nocatee Bicycle Accident Attorneys

Nocatee Bicycle Accident Attorneys
at
Shorstein, Lasnetski, & Gihon

Bicycles are plentiful in beautiful Nocatee.  Children bike to school.  Families take bike rides together.  Men and women bike for exercise.  Unfortunately, when bicycles and motor vehicles share the roadways, accidents are bound to happen.  When they do, it is important to understand your rights and what actions can help or hurt your efforts to be made whole.  

What are the bicycle laws in Nocatee?

We often get questions from our neighbors in Nocatee about Florida bicycle laws.  You can find the bicycle regulations for the State of Florida in Florida Statute Section 316.2065.  Generally, a bicyclist on the roadway has the same rights and responsibilities as a driver of a motor vehicle.  A bicyclist on a sidewalk or across a roadway or in a crosswalk has the same rights and responsibilities of a pedestrian.  Here are a few of the statutes that relate specifically to bicyclists:

  • A child under 16 must wear a bicycle helmet.  Violation could result in a verbal warning and safety brochure or citation and fine which can be dismissed upon proof of purchase of a bicycle helmet. 
  • A bicyclist travelling less than the normal speed of traffic must ride in the bicycle lane if there is one or as close to the right-hand curb as possible if there is no bike lane. 
    • Exceptions
      • when passing another bicycle or vehicle going in the same direction
      • when making a left turn at an intersection into a private road or driveway
      • when reasonably necessary to avoid a hazard like a parked or moving car, pedestrian pothole, etc. 
      • when there is a one way highway with two or more marked lanes, the bicyclist may travel on as close to the left-hand curb as possible
  • A bicyclist may not ride more than two abreast unless on a bicycle path.  
  • A bicyclist may not ride two abreast and impede traffic when riding less than the normal speed of traffic.  
  • A bicyclist may ride two abreast within a bicycle lane only if they both can fit side by side within the bicycle lane. 
  • When travelling in groups of more than 10 bicyclists and coming to a stop sign at an intersection, a group of 10 bicyclists or fewer may proceed through the stop sign after coming to a full stop and obeying traffic laws, the remaining bicyclists must allow motor vehicles to proceed through the intersection before the next group of 10 or fewer proceed.  
  • A bicyclist must have a lamp in the front visible from 500 feet and a lamp and reflector on the rear visible from 600 feet if used between sunset and sunrise.  
Violation of the above laws typically are considered noncriminal traffic infractions punishable by fines.  

What if someone in a car hit me while I was on my bicycle, but I violated one of the bicycle laws?

Florida is a comparative negligence state.  That means that a jury must determine what percentage the plaintiff was at fault and what percentage the defendant was at fault.  Whatever monetary verdict is rendered would be reduced by the percentage that the plaintiff was at fault.  This is much better than contributory negligence, which could completely bar a plaintiff from any recovery.  So, even if you were someone at fault for the injury, for example, because you didn't look both ways as you crossed the street, or you weren't wearing a helmet, it doesn't mean that the person who injured you isn't financially responsible for your injuries.  Their financial liability would just be reduced by the percentage of negligence the jury ultimately attributes to you, the plaintiff.  It is interesting to note that Fla. Stat. Section 316.2065(18) specifically prohibits a jury from considering the failure to wear a helmet or a parent's failure to make their child wear a helmet as evidence of negligence or contributory negligence.  
What should I do if I'm hit by a car while riding a bicycle in or near Nocatee?

It is a common occurrence for a bicyclist who is hit by a motorist to get up and quickly ride away.  Sometimes it's shock.  Sometimes it's embarassment.  Sometimes it's anger.  Or it could be a mixture of several emotions.  It is often not until several minutes, hours or even days later that you may know that you are injured.  Soft tissue injuries are not always discovered until well after the accident.  It is important if you are involved in any accident where you are or may have been injured to get the name, address, date of birth, contact information, license number and insurance information of the person who injured you.  Seek medical attention right away.  Take photos of any visible injuries.  Take photos of damage to your bicycle.  Get the names and contact information of any witnesses at the scene.  

Contact the Nocatee Bicycle Accident Attorneys at
Shorstein, Lasnetski, & Gihon
Call - 904-642-3332
Text - 904-525-3332
Email - slglaw@slgattorneys.com


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