In warmer weather, there is a tendency to see more bicyclists on the roads, sidewalks, and bike paths. Our Chicago injury attorneys always notice an increase in the number of calls we receive about bicycle accident injuries in the spring and summer. Bicyclists in Illinois are responsible for following rules similar to most other motorists, so we thought it would be helpful to remind our readers-bikers and drivers alike-about basic bike Rules of the Road in Illinois.
Bicyclists should drive in the same direction as other motorists on the road, but in some instances road blockage can cause the cyclist to have to move inward to avoid the obstructions. Bicyclists have the right-of-way on the road when it comes to bicyclists and motorists. If your car is riding next to a bicycle and for whatever reason you are required to pass it, the Illinois Rules of the Road booklet suggests that drivers “do so slowly and leave at least 3 ft. of passing space”.
Blog readers may recall that last summer, Governor Pat Quinn signed legislation for bicyclists into law in order to better safeguard cyclists around Illinois. The law, which has recently been established as effective, created penalties for motorists who drive aggressively towards cyclists. We urge motorists to pay close attention to bicyclists, however, it is also crucial that cyclists still operate their bikes safely and wear a fitted helmet to lower their risk for serious injury should accident occur.
When a bike and car are involved in an accident, the bicyclist usually suffers from worse injuries due to the sheer size difference. When drivers are aggressive, disobey road signs or do not pay attention to smaller vehicles or bicycles on the road, a serious accident can occur. If a cyclist is involved, especially one who is not wearing the proper safety equipment such as a helmet, it is probable that the smaller vehicle or bicyclist will suffer from more severe injuries.
Our Chicago accident attorneys realize that negligent drivers cause many bike accidents. When an accident occurs and a bicyclist is injured, he or she has the right to take legal action in order to recover damages. Our Illinois accident attorneys have handled many cases of this nature successfully and may be able to help you. If you have been a victim in an Illinois bicycle accident, or have lost a loved one due to a negligent driver’s mistake, please contact us to discuss your potential case to determine if we can help you take action.