The Hoosier State is home to thousands of enthusiastic bicyclists; however, if you are a new to riding bikes, it’s important for you to be aware of basic safety measures that can help protect Indiana laws governing bicycling.
The first thing to know is that bicyclists in Indiana are subject to the same rules and regulations as any other person driving a vehicle on the roadways. Just because a bicycle rider is on the road, it does not give them carte blanche to disregard safety rules, or to place themselves or others at risk. It is important for riders to learn about bicycling rights and duties, and make sure that they follow all safety and traffic rules and regulations.
For instance, bicycling in groups can be great fun; however, while riding in a group, it’s important to know the best practice. Basic bicycle safety rules make it clear that persons riding more than two abreast increases the dangers for cyclists, except when riding on special bicycle paths that are meant exclusively for these bicyclists. Single file riding makes more room for passing cars and trucks and reduces the risks to bicycle riders.
Riders should always make sure that both hands are completely free and available for the task of steering the bike. Bicyclists must not carry any article, object or package while riding.
A bicycle should be equipped with a bell or any portable device that is capable of emitting a sound or a signal for a distance of at least 100 feet. Bicyclists are not always visible to motorists and installing a bell helps remind others of the bike’s presence.
When riding a bicycle on a highway, the rider should always use a white-light emitting front lamp and a red light emitting rear lamp between sunset and sunrise. Ideally, like motorcycles, a constantly lit bike light increases a bicyclist’s visibility while on the road.
As is also true with motorcycles drivers, the state of Indiana does not mandate that bicyclists wear a helmet while riding, yet failing to do so places a rider at great risk for severe head injuries in even the most minor of accidents or falls. Bicyclists are some of the most vulnerable and exposed people on our roads, and riding without wearing a helmet increases the chances of a severe head injury if a rider is involved in an accident. Purchase a snug, well-fitted helmet that is not too loose or too tight. If it is too loose, the helmet will not offer the full protection to your head against injury. If it is too tight, the rider is more likely to avoid wearing it.
Make sure that the bicycle helmet is not involved in any recall and that is free from defects and manufacturing deficiencies.
Bicyclist have just as much right to ride on Indiana roadways as other vehicles but it is also important for riders to be a safe and responsible.
The Indiana bicycle accident lawyers at Montross Miller Muller Mendelson & Kennedy, LLP represent persons injured in bicycle accidents across Indiana. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury as a result of someone’s carelessness or recklessness, contact our office right away.