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Posted on in Car Wrecks

b2ap3_thumbnail_bike-crash.jpgA bicyclist was recently struck and killed by a drunk driver near I-10 and The Dominion. The deceased was an older man, who had been in a marked bicycle lane, wearing a helmet and otherwise taking all the necessary precautions, but a woman driving a white SUV struck him from the side and he died at the scene. These types of bicycling accidents are not common, per se, but they are more common than they should be, especially since it is fairly obvious that a bicyclist is not going to be as well protected in a crash as the driver or passenger of an automobile. If you have been struck by a reckless or negligent driver, you may be able to bring suit against them to try and recover for any medical expenses you may sustain.

Texas Bike Laws Insufficient

Despite having such a large population, Texas does not have many laws in place which protect bicyclists specifically. A few are on the books - for example, Texas has laws against “dooring,” which is suddenly opening a car door without properly checking for cyclists or anyone else in the bicycle lane. Also, Texas does define a ‘vehicle’ in such a way as to include bicyclists, which grants them both the rights and duties of any other driver. However, many other regulations could be in effect, and Texas either chooses to ignore them or to leave them to the cities to pass individually.

For example, some states have what is called a safe passing law - requiring motorists to leave space, usually at least three feet, when passing a bicyclist, so the bicyclist does not have to correct course or react hastily to avoid the passing car. Texas has no safe passing law. Cities like San Antonio, New Braunfels, and El Paso have their own city ordinances for this, but enforcement may not be as widespread. The same pattern is true with laws regarding bicycle helmet use - no statewide requirement exists, though many cities have passed helmet laws both for children and adults.

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