In Atlanta, a bicycle is considered a vehicle, which means that motor vehicle laws that apply to cars, trucks, and tractor-trailers also apply to riding a bike on public roadways. In other words, that means that the uniform rules of the road also apply to people riding bicycles.
In Atlanta, traffic laws apply to bicycle riders in a variety of ways. If you were injured in a recent biking accident, one of our skilled attorneys could discuss with you how these rules and regulations may impact the outcome of your case.
How the State Address Bicycles
The Georgia state legislature has codified specific laws that pertain to both the operation of a bicycle and the equipment itself. For example, any person operating a bicycle should signal a right-hand turn by extending their right arm horizontally, or by extending their left arm and raising their left hand upwards.
The Board of Public Safety in Georgia regulates the operation of bicycles on Atlanta roads.
Finally, there are various civil rights and obligations that require cyclists to be cautious of other drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians on the road. These laws become especially significant during a civil case, when lawyers from both sides attempt to establish who was legally at fault for a biking accident.
Distinct Bicycle Laws in Atlanta
There are several distinct Atlanta bicycle laws codified in Official Code of Georgia §40-6-292. One of those laws is that any person propelling a bicycle must ride upon a permanent and regular seat attached to their bike, and they may not allow any other person to ride on the handlebars.
In other words, there should be only one person on any given bicycle unless it is designed for two or more riders. For example, if a bicycle is equipped to carry a toddler or a baby, or if there is a second bicycle seat specifically designed by the manufacturer to carry more than one person, that is fine.
Furthermore, it is illegal to transport a child under the age of one as a bicycle passenger on a highway, roadway, bicycle path, bicycle lane, or sidewalk. A child under the age of one can be transported in a bicycle trailer or infant sling as long as they are secured in the trailer or swing according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Additionally, no child between the ages of one and four years can ride as a passenger on a bicycle or in a bicycle trailer unless they are securely seated in a child passenger bicycle seat, and that seat is installed and utilized in accordance with the manufacturer’s specifications.
Another distinct law makes it illegal for any person riding a bicycle in Atlanta to attach themselves to any vehicle on a roadway. That means a cyclist cannot fasten their bicycle to another vehicle while that it is moving, nor can they hold on with their arm to another vehicle that is moving.
The Importance of Talking to an Attorney About Atlanta Bicycle Laws
It is important to note that a violation of O.C.G.A. §40-60-292 would not constitute negligence per se or contributory negligence per se, so it would not be considered evidence of civil liability. Additionally, there is a specific statute which states that no person under the age of 16 years who fails to comply with this statute can be fined or imprisoned.
For other parties and other circumstances, though, violation of bicycle laws in Atlanta can have a significant impact on an injured cyclist’s case. To learn more about how these regulations could affect your claim for compensation, talk with an experienced lawyer today.