Whether you or a loved one was hurt by a car or truck, or you are the victim of a California bicycle accident, you are probably not up to speed on the Golden State’s bicycle laws.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, bicycles are classified as vehicles in the State of California. Cyclists get a lot of the same rights as motorists do… but they also have a lot of the same responsibilities. The law does not treat cyclists and motorists identically, though.
Here are some bike-specific rules:
- Bicycles all must have a red reflector on the back that can be seen from a distance of up to 500 feet by a car trailing you.
- The pedals on your bike – or the shoes that you wear – must also have a reflector. These pedal reflectors must be visible from 200 feet away.
- You also need to have side reflectors (white or yellow) or reflective tires.
- Cyclists also need to have back and front headlights that can be seen from 300 feet away – both from the sides and front of the cycle.
- If your bike is not equipped with a light, you are allowed to wear a light strapped to your head or helmet.
Cyclists who violate these laws can be hit with small fines ($75). But if you got into an accident with a bicycle in California – and the cyclist lacked the requisite headlights and reflectors – you can use this information to build a personal injury case or defend yourself against legal action.