The Florida Highway Patrol continues to investigate a deadly bicycle accident that occurred in Manatee County on the evening of April 6.
According to state troopers, a driver was heading east on State Road 684 in his jeep at around 10 p.m. The light was green as he approached the intersection of SR 684 and 43rd Street West, so he continued through. However, a bicyclist was attempting to cross SR 684 from the south to north side in the crosswalk located on the east side of the intersection, and rode right into the path of the jeep. As a result, the driver hit the bicycle and the person riding it was gravely injured, dying at the scene of the accident.
When accidents like this occur, it’s important to take a close look at the rights that bicyclists have while on the road and the rules they must follow. In general, you can assume that people riding their bikes are subject to all of the same rules as motorists.
But does the presence of a crosswalk make anything different in this case? Not likely. Because the bicyclist was riding his bike across the crosswalk, it was still presumed that he had the same rights and responsibilities of a motorist, which meant that he did not have the right of way to cross the intersection. Had he gotten off his bike and walked the bike across the crosswalk, however, it would have been the driver’s responsibility to yield to him as he would have become a pedestrian in that situation.
If you have been injured in a bike accident or would like more information on the rights and responsibilities bicyclists have, get in touch with the Bradenton personal injury lawyers at Shapiro, Goldman, Babboni & Walsh.