A man on a motorized bicycle is in critical condition after getting hit crossing the road. The man has not been identified by was crossing W. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.s Boulevard at N. Himes Avenue when he was struck. The accident happened at approximately 6 p.m. on Sunday. The initial news report is that the bicyclist attempted to cross the road without a traffic control signal.
Definition Of Motorized Bicycle
A motorized bicycle is defined by section 316.003(3), Florida Statutes:
Every vehicle propelled solely by human power, and every motorized bicycle propelled by a combination of human power and an electric helper motor capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed of not more than 20 miles per hour on level ground upon which any person may ride, having two tandem wheels, and including any device generally recognized as a bicycle though equipped with two front or two rear wheels. The term does not include such a vehicle with a seat height of no more than 25 inches from the ground when the seat is adjusted to its highest position or a scooter or similar device. A person under the age of 16 may not operate or ride upon a motorized bicycle.
Moped vs. Scooter
This is completely different than a moped and a scooter. Mopeds are defined by section 316.208, Florida Statutes and are a combination of human power and motor power but can go faster than the 20 mph limit for motorized bicycles. Scooters are automatic motorcycles.
Where Can You Legally Ride A Motorized Bicycle In Florida?
The differences between these “vehicles” is significant. A motorized bicycle can be ridden on a sidewalk under motor power because of its limited speed. A moped, on the other hand, can be ridden on a sidewalk under human power but not using the motor. A scooter cannot be ridden on a sidewalk at all (legally that is).
Now that we have cleared up the equipment, the motorized bicycle involved in this accident would have been bound by pedestrian rules of the road under all conditions. Because of this, the motorized bicycle rider would need to wait for a crosswalk signal or cross at somewhere other than an intersection. A pedestrian with a crosswalk signal has the right of way. When crossing a roadway not at an intersection, the pedestrian must yield the right of way to vehicles coming from either direction.
Florida’s Catch-All For Pedestrian Accidents
Therefore, going to the pedestrian rules of the road in section 316.130, Florida Statutes, we find subsection 15, below:
(15) Notwithstanding other provisions of this chapter, every driver of a vehicle shall exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian or any person propelling a human-powered vehicle and give warning when necessary and exercise proper precaution upon observing any child or any obviously confused or incapacitated person.
This section of the law has the potential to make a case against the driver of the car because it can be argued that the driver of the car should have been able to see and avoid the pedestrian if they were paying proper attention to the roadway.
Get In Touch With A Polk County Personal Injury Attorney For Help With Your Case
The analysis of a pedestrian accident can be a complicated legal analysis. If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident in Polk County, Florida, please contact a Polk County, Florida car accident lawyer to discuss the facts of your case in a free consultation.