Last Updated: 05.04.2020

Cyclists and those riding bicycles on roadways are responsible for adhering to the same road rules as automobile drivers. The experienced accident lawyers at the Law Offices of Eldridge and Nachtman explain who may be at fault when there is an accident involving a bicycle.

In these hot summer months, it is common for cyclists and automobile operators to share the road. But accidents involving the vehicles occur often, and for a number of different reasons. Often, the cause of such a crash is negligence on behalf of the automobile operator, the bicyclist or sometimes both. It is important to be well-informed of the laws regarding road cycling, and to be aware of one’s surroundings at all times when taking a road route. However, when there is an accident, the following information can be used to help determine fault.


Right-of-way is the most common determining factor of liability in an accident between an automobile and a bicycle. Should the two vehicles approach an intersection with no traffic signal, the first arriver typically has the right-of-way. However if they arrive at the same time, the vehicle to the right may  proceed first. When a major street intersects with a minor street, traffic traveling on the major street has the right to continue before that of the minor.


When traffic signals are present, the sensors attached do not always sense a bicycle. When this is the case, a cyclist can move their vehicle closer to the signal sensor, or cross at a pedestrian cross walk. Otherwise, the signal is the determining factor for right-of-way on any roadway.

In a situation where it is a cyclists responsibility to yield to a car, and they fail to do so, they will be held liable for the accident. Similarly, if a cyclist doesn’t completely stop at an intersection and this action causes a collision between a bicycle and car, the cyclist may not be eligible to recover personal injury damages despite the fact that the automobile may be responsible for physical damage caused.

Guidelines for Road Cycling 

When riding a bike, it is important to adhere to the same laws and guidelines that an automobile driver would be responsible for. Maintain consistency with the direction of traffic, and execute complete stops at traffic signals requiring such action. Since bicycles are considered vehicles in many states, it is not only dangerous to disregard basic motor vehicle laws, it is illegal. Further, doing so can cause severe accidents which may lead to injury, monetary loss and sometimes fatalities.

ENLawyers Bottom Line

If you are injured in an automobile or bicycle accident or have suffered other injuries that are the result of another’s negligence, it is important to consult with experienced lawyers to determine who may be at fault for your accident. For any questions pertaining to Baltimore automobile accident law, don’t forget to contact ENLawyers by phone at 443.559.4384 or via email at