Sometimes, penalties are used as a way to try to prevent car accidents that involve bikes, but this does not always make a difference. For example, one woman told her story of pulling out onto the road and almost hitting two cyclists simply because she had not seen them — and possibly because they went through a stop, though she wasn’t sure. Due to the fact that she was watching the road vigilantly, she spotted them in time, but she pointed out that all of the penalties and fines on the books — even if they had been much more drastic — wouldn’t have made a difference.

Instead, she put forth some ideas that may help cyclists and drivers to avoid accidents. The first was for people to really read the laws and regulations regarding bikes every year, even if they have already read them. She pointed out that these laws do change frequently.

On top of that, she said that cyclists should try to remember how hard it is for drivers to see them on the road, both because of their small profile and because of the fact that they sometimes wear dark colors, like black.

Finally, she said that people needed to obey all of the laws, even the ones that they thought were wrong. She encouraged people to fight to change the laws if they did not like them, but she said that simply ignoring the ones that they did not like was a bad idea.

When involved in car accidents in Connecticut that also involve cyclists, it is very important to know all of your rights and your legal options.

Source: Capital Gazette, “Guest column: How to cut bike-car accidents” Anita Heygster, Sep. 21, 2014