BIKE RIDING LAWS – ROAD RULES FOR BICYCLES
The State of Minnesota encourages bicycle riding. We have thousands of miles of bike paths, and many city streets have designated bike lanes. With more bikers on the road, however, there is more opportunity for car-bike accidents. Our lawyers get a number of bicycle accident injury cases every year. Sometimes questions come up about whether the car or the bike has the rights away or which is at fault in the accident. Therefore, we thought it would be helpful to share some of the laws that apply to bicycles on the street or road in MN.
First, when a bike is on a street or road, they generally have the same legal rights and duties of automobiles and must travel in the same direction and manner of travel on the roadway that automobiles would. However, the bicyclist may be negligent for traveling between car and curb if not in a designated bike lane.
It is also important to know that bicycles lawfully on sidewalk have same rights and duties as pedestrians. This includes riding in any direction on the sidewalk, with or against traffic. Bicycles may travel on sidewalks, so long as it is not in a business district.
Many of the bicycle accidents that our attorneys handle involve a car hitting a bike at an intersection. This usually occurs when the car has a stop sign and either doesn’t stop, or stops and then starts without noticing the bike crossing the road in front of it. However, our lawyers have also had several cases where a car drifts onto the shoulder of the road and hits a bicycle. The injury from a bike accident when hit by a car can be serious. Our lawyers make sure that the injured bike rider gets all appropriate compensation, including medical bills, wage loss reimbursement, and compensation for pain and suffering.