Bicyclists: Riding Against the Flow of Traffic is Dangerous—and Illegal

Riding a bicycle is one of the best ways possible to enjoy exercise. And although the weather can change on a dime, bicycling allows you to get outside in that famous Florida sunshine and fresh air, traveling at your own pace and experiencing physical benefits as cardiovascular health is improved, muscles and bones are strengthened, and stress levels are reduced significantly.

All of the added health benefits from bicycling can end abruptly, however, if proper safety measures aren’t taken. Along with understanding proper road signals, wearing highly visible clothing, and making sure that your bike is in working order, how you ride your bike makes all the difference. And although many cyclists may have heard that riding against the flow of traffic is better as it allows you to see what you are dealing with on the road, such a practice is not only extremely unsafe, but it is against the law too.

On a busy road, when riding against the flow, the problem of visibility is decreased even further. Motorists (already challenged to see anything other than cars and trucks) are usually not prepared for bicyclists to be riding the opposite way and their reaction time is much more restricted if they need to swerve out of the way or stop quickly. This is also like riding down a one-way street as all the road signs are directed the other way. And while motorists are the main concern for being hit while you are riding a bike, if you are going the wrong direction you may find others to be confused by your behavior too—like pedestrians. Such riding habits are dangerous for everyone on the road and while riding the wrong direction could get you a ticket, it could also mean that you were the negligent party in the case of an accident.

Bicyclists in traffic are at an enormous disadvantage due to lack of protection in comparison to motorists. Helmets are able to prevent some major head injuries, but bicycle accidents may result in serious contusions, broken bones, neck and spinal injuries, paralysis, and even death. While everyone should focus on being safe while in traffic, Florida roads merit extra concern as they are known to be extra dangerous for motorists—as well as for bicyclists and pedestrians, with seniors traveling on foot at even greatest risk.

If you or a loved one have been injured in a bicycling accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact the attorneys at Heintz & Becker. We’ve helped victims from Bradenton, Sarasota, and all over Florida get compensation for their damages and medical expenses after accidents. Call us for a free consultation now at 941-748-2916 or contact us online. We are here to help!

All blogs are written on behalf of Heintz & Becker for informational purposes. These articles should not, however, be considered legal advice, or in any way responsible for creating an attorney/client relationship.