As a bicyclist in the state of Florida, you must obey the rules of the road at all times. There may be times when you feel vulnerable as a bicyclist, especially on busy roads, and you may even have been involved in an accident. All drivers of vehicles must be mindful of cyclists and respect their rights.
If you have been involved in an accident as a cyclist or you believe that a driver acted recklessly and dangerously in Florida, it is important to understand where the law stands when it comes to protecting bicyclists.
The standards held in place for bikers are sometimes viewed as controversial. Since they are often administered by local ordinances, the guidelines can vary. Some ordinances, for example, suggest that bicyclists ride their bikes on the sidewalk, whereas many argue that this practice can endanger pedestrians. The ordinances usually make suggestions based on the congestion of roads in the area. Therefore, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with these guidelines that apply to the routes you regularly take.
How do traffic laws apply to bicyclists in Florida?
It is important that all bicyclists follow basic safety practices, one of them being signaling. Signaling goes a long way to prevent collisions and can be done by extending the arm outwards in the direction that you want to take. This should be exercised before all turns and lane changes.
If you are under the age of 16, you must wear a helmet on a bicycle, according to the law. Bicyclists over the age of 16 are not legally required to wear a helmet, however, it is highly recommended for optimum safety.
You should also ensure that your bike is appropriately fitted with reflectors and lights so that you can be easily spotted by vehicles in low light and darkness.
If you have been involved in an accident involving a car in Florida, you should make sure to track as many witnesses as possible who can help to establish what happened. Since cars have a greater potential to cause damage, they are more frequently found to be liable. It's important to take swift action to establish your rights as a bicyclist.