Pedestrian and Bike Safety

Motor vehicle drivers must be cautious while driving when sharing the road with pedestrians and bicyclists. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, drivers must keep a four foot distance between their vehicle and a bicycle if wanting to pass the bicycle. When passing, motorists should do so with caution and at a reduced speed. If necessary, it is legal to cross the double yellow line when passing a bicycle; however, when doing so, you must still keep a four foot distance between your vehicle and the bicycle. To be able to follow this rule effectively, you must be an alert driver. Never text while driving, keep the radio to a minimum volume and eliminate any distractions that keep you from focusing on the road. You should also be aware of your surroundings while driving, observing where crosswalks, sidewalks and bike lanes are. Most importantly drivers must always obey speed limits and yield to pedestrians.

As a pedestrian it is also important to obey the rules of the road. This includes obeying traffic signals and using crosswalks and sidewalks. When crossing intersections, try and make eye contact with drivers to ensure they are paying attention. Walk against the traffic so you are able to see vehicles traveling toward you and make adjustments if needed. If you are traveling at night, wear light colored clothing or reflector tape to make yourself more visible to drivers.

For bicyclists to keep safe while traveling, consider signaling other vehicles ahead of time with your arms to indicate a turn. If you have a bike lane where you are traveling, use that before driving in a vehicle’s lane. As a bicyclist, be aware that vehicles do have a lot of blind spots. To ensure your own safety, keep that in mind when traveling close to vehicles. Although helmets are not required for cyclists over the age of 12, adults should consider wearing protective helmets to eliminate serious injuries in the event of an accident. Additionally, try to wear proper clothing and light colored attire to make yourself as noticeable as possible to drivers.

No matter how you plan on traveling this summer, we hope you do so with caution. If you or someone you know was injured in an accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. Don’t let an accident or injury ruin your summer. Let the attorneys at Berger and Green handle your claim.

Source: Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Just Drive PA