While bicycle riding becomes less common in the winter months, it remains a popular pastime for many year-round. In 2010, there were more than 700 reported collisions between bicycles and cars resulting in a number of injuries and fatalities.

Can a bicyclist ever be at fault for a collision with a motor vehicle?

The simple answer is yes. Wisconsin requires that bicyclists follow the law when riding. Failure to follow traffic laws may be evidence of at least partial negligence on the cyclist’s part, even if the motor vehicle driver was also at fault.

Wisconsin law defines a bicycle as a vehicle, meaning that the operator of a bicycle is expected to be as responsible as other vehicle drivers. As such, a bicyclist must stop and yield when necessary, be in the appropriate lane and travel in the proper direction. Because bicyclists have many of the same duties under the law as the operators of other vehicles, they may be liable if they cause an accident by breaking traffic laws or through their own lack of care.

If you or someone you care about has been injured in an accident involving a bicycle, contact the bike accident lawyers at Samster, Konkel & Safran, S.C. for help. Each case is unique, and it is important to seek out experienced legal counsel to help evaluate your rights.