Understanding the specific traffic laws for motorcyclists in Columbus could not only help keep you and other motorists safe, it can also help you avoid liability in the event of a civil case. If you were struck by a negligent driver, they may claim you were in violation of traffic laws and therefore responsible for the collision.
Our team can help you avoid liability if you suffered harm in a motorcycle accident. Our motorcycle accident attorneys can review your case and help you build a strong case for damages against the responsible party.
Requirements for Columbus Motorcyclists
Ohio law states that a motorcyclist must operate their bike on a highway, not on a sidewalk or side street. Additionally, the revised codes mandate that the handlebars of a motorcycle are not allowed to ride higher than the shoulders of the operator. As far as the number of riders per lane, there can be no more than two across in any given lane of traffic.
Novice bikers or anyone under the age of 18 who is operating a motorcycle are required to wear helmets. All motorcyclists are required to wear protective eyewear.
How Do Motorcycle Laws Impact a Case?
Ohio is a comparative law state, which means that a court will determine the responsibility of all parties for any involvement or negligence that results in a crash. In that respect, there are certain additional rules that apply to motorcyclists in regards to how negligence could be attributed.
If it is found that an injured motorcyclist was violating a traffic law at the time of the collision, they could bear some liability. In other words, the biker would be negligent, in which case they could be attributed some fault if those violations affected the cause of the accident. For instance, if motorcyclists were riding 3-abreast and that was the primary cause of the accident, then they would put the contributory negligence on the motor vehicle operator.
Since contributory negligence could drastically impact a case, it is important that an injured motorcyclist seek guidance from a seasoned local lawyer. Our team of attorneys can help determine how much liability might fall on the biker in an accident.
Best Practices for Bikers to Avoid Complicating Their Claims
In cases where a negligent driver strikes a motorcyclist, it is rare for the defendant to accept full responsibility. Often, they will try to place the blame on the injured biker and claim that the motorcyclist violated a local traffic law and therefore was the cause of the accident.
Fortunately, there are certain steps motorcyclists can take following a wreck to improve their case. An injured biker should contact medical and law enforcement services after a collision and establish with the police officer that investigated the scene who was in what lane of travel and what evasive action the motorcyclist had to take.
Motorcyclists will often take evasive action in order to avoid being hit because they know being struck is going to be more harmful or even deadly. Sometimes there is no actual contact between the biker and the other vehicle, but a car will swerve or cut-off the biker’s lane of travel. This could require motorcyclists to take evasive action by putting down their bike, which is a common practice for people to do to avoid a more serious injury, rather than a head-on crash into a vehicle.
If possible, an injured biker should also be sure to preserve evidence immediately at the crash scene in case there is not a clear liability. This includes taking photos or videos, collecting statements and contact information from witnesses, and collecting documentation of all medical treatment required.
Discuss Columbus Traffic Laws for Motorcyclists with a Local Attorney
The traffic laws for motorcyclists in Columbus could greatly impact a civil case. If it is found the biker was violating a law at the time of a collision, they could have their damage award greatly reduced or be barred from recovery altogether. Therefore, it is important to follow safety regulations and to work with an experienced attorney in the event of a wreck.
Our team of trustworthy lawyers can help you seek a full damage award from the party responsible for your harm. Call today and schedule a free consultation.