Utah Bike Summit - Cycling Laws & Insurance


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D. Russel Hymas presented April 26, 2013 at the Utah Bike Summit. For more information on Mr. Hymas & the Utah Bicycle Lawyers, visit our website: http://www.utahbicyclelawyers.com

This presentation covers Utah bicycle traffic laws, including newly passed legislation from the 2013 Utah Legislative Session. Mr. Hymas also covered information on insuring a bicycle and the rider in case of accidents.

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Utah Bike Summit - Cycling Laws & Insurance

  1. 1. Cycling Laws And InsuranceD. Russell Hymas
  2. 2. Laws• Important Laws All Cyclists Should Know• New Laws From Past Legislative Session
  3. 3. Important Cycling Laws
  4. 4. Important Cycling LawsCyclists have the samerights and responsibilities asmotorists, with a few notableexceptions.Applies to speed, right-of-wayrules, stop signs and other trafficsignals.General Rule –
  5. 5. Important Cycling Laws
  6. 6. Important Cycling Laws• Use of Lanes:–If there is a designated bike lane, use it–If there is no bike lane, you are entitled touse the lanes of traffic–If traveling at less than the speed oftraffic, ride “as near as practicable to theright-hand edge of the roadway”
  7. 7. Use of LanesRight-hand edge of roadway exceptions:– Passing another bicycle or vehicle;– Left-hand turns;– Traveling straight through intersection that hasright-turn only lane; and– **As reasonably necessary to avoid conditionsthat make it unsafe.
  8. 8. Use of LanesExamples of reasonably unsafe conditions:
  9. 9. Use of LanesExamples of reasonably unsafe conditions:– Objects, parked cars, pedestrians;– Surface hazards (debris, glass, pot holes);and– A lane that is too narrow for a bicycle and avehicle to travel safely side-by-side withinthe lane.
  10. 10. Use of Lanes• Must ride with the flow of traffic;• Never more than two abreast– Single file is necessary if impeding traffic ordesignated areas (e.g., Emigration Canyon)• Motorists may not pass within 3 feet of amoving bicycle.
  11. 11. Sidewalks & CrosswalksCyclists havethe same rights and duties as a pedestrianwhen on a sidewalk, path, trail, orcrosswalk.– Riding on sidewalk prohibited in some cities;– Must yield right-of-way to pedestrians;– Must give an audible signal beforeovertaking pedestrian; and– Must ride at a reasonable speed.Exception to General Rule:
  12. 12. Turns & Turn Signals
  13. 13. Turns & Turn Signals• Left-turn, right-turn, and stopping signalsare required;• Left-hand turns:– May use the left-hand turn lane; OR– May stay on the right-hand side of theroadway, ride through the intersection to theopposite side, wait for light to change, thencross the street with the flow of traffic.• Not required to signal continuously.
  14. 14. VisibilityBad Example:
  15. 15. VisibilityGood Example:
  16. 16. VisibilityBest Example:
  17. 17. Visibility• When required?– Half-hour after sunset– Half-hour before sunrise– Conditions don’t allow 1,000 ft. visibility• What is required?– Lighting/reflectors visible from 500 feet– Front white light– Rear red taillight/reflector (flashing or non-flashing)– Lights or reflectors on both sides
  18. 18. New Laws• Vulnerable User Law:–Enhanced penalties for causing injury tocyclists or other “vulnerable users”–No exceptions to 3-foot law!
  19. 19. New Laws• Non-responsive signals:– Cyclist comes to a complete stop at a red light &signal doesn’t detect presence for 90 seconds ormore– Cyclist is allowed to proceed across the roadway ifcan be done safely– Applies to cyclists and motorcycles– Sunset: July 1, 2014
  20. 20. New Laws• Passing on the Right:
  21. 21. • Passing on the Right:– Allows cyclists to utilize shoulder to pass vehicleson the right– May only do so if move can be made safelyNew Laws
  22. 22. Insurance
  23. 23. Types of Insurance:• Liability Insurance• Personal Injury Protection (PIP)• Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM)• Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UIM)• Theft InsuranceInsurance
  24. 24. • Motorists must carry state minimum25/65/15 policy:– Covers up to $25,000 of damages perperson (including medical expenses, lostwages, pain & suffering)– If two or more are injured, maximumcoverage is $65,000 per accident– Covers up to $15,000 in property damageLiability Insurance
  25. 25. Problems presented:– Need for immediate medical treatment• Liability Ins. won’t pay anything until settlement• 30 days to investigate & determine fault– What if the driver is uninsured?– What if I’m seriously injured & my medicalexpenses are over $25,000?Liability Insurance
  26. 26. Need for ImmediateMedical Treatment• PIP / No-fault Insurance– Each vehicle must carry a minimum of$3,000 to pay for medical expenses– Available for each person in vehicle, as wellas cyclists and pedestrians that come incontact with vehicle– “Fault” is not taken into consideration– If cyclist has own autoinsurance, “secondary” PIP may be available
  27. 27. Never leave the scene of anaccident without obtaining insuranceinformation from the at-faultmotorist, even if you don’t think you’rehurt.Don’t risk going without healthinsurance. If treatment is needed beyondPIP limits, health insurance will pay untiltime of settlement.Need for ImmediateMedical TreatmentLesson #1:Lesson #2:
  28. 28. What if Driver is Uninsured?• Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM)– Pays for your medical expenses, lostwages, and other damages– Coverage available under your own autopolicy– When does it apply?• Driver’s auto insurance has lapsed• Hit-&-run accidents• Phantom vehicle accidents
  29. 29. What if Driver is Uninsured?Case Example:– Cyclist goes through an intersection on a greenlight, car makes left-hand turn in front ofcyclist, resulting in T-bone collision– Cyclist is seriously injured, $20,000 in medicalexpenses– Motorist has let auto insurance lapse– Cyclist waived UM coverage on his policy, savinghim $5 per month– Now stuck with $20,000 in medical bills
  30. 30. What if Driver is Uninsured?Never waive UM coverage.Provides essential safety net in anaccident with an uninsured driver.Carry a minimum of100/300 in UM coverage.Lesson:Recommendation:
  31. 31. What if My Damages Are MoreThan the Liability Limits?• Underinsured Motorist Coverage (UIM)– Pays for your medical expenses, lostwages, and other damages beyond at-faultdriver’s liability policy limits– Coverage available under your own autopolicy– When does it apply?• At-fault driver’s liability policy has been paid butis insufficient to cover all damages
  32. 32. What if My Damages Are MoreThan the Liability Limits?• Case Example:– Cyclist is struck from behind by motorist who veers intobicycle lane. Cyclist’s injuries result in a neck fusionsurgery (costing over $45,000).– Driver’s liability insurance pays its limits of $25,000.– Cyclist then makes UIM claim for remaining $20,000 inbills, plus lost wages and pain & suffering.– If cyclist had waived UIM coverage, he would be payingout of pocket for medical bills, even though accident wasnot his fault!
  33. 33. What if My Damages Are MoreThan the Liability Limits?Never waive UIM coverage.Provides essential safety net in anaccident where injuries exceed the at-fault policy limits.Carry a minimum of100/300 in UIM coverage.Lesson:Recommendation:
  34. 34. Bicycle Theft Insurance
  35. 35. Bicycle Theft Insurance• Homeowner’s / Renter’s Insurance– Some policies require a special rider(Special Personal PropertyInsurance), similar to expensive jewelry– Must be able to prove value• Proof of purchase or appraisal• Be careful if you’ve added expensive upgrades– Check with insurance agent
  36. 36. Bicycle Liability/Theft/DamageInsuranceFull coverage for bicycleLimited availability, expensivepremiumsPros:Cons:
  37. 37. Utah Bicycle Lawyers – ResourcesUtahBicycleLawyers.com
  38. 38. Cycling Laws And InsuranceD. Russell Hymas