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Rules of the road for bikes and motorcycles in North Carolina

On Behalf of | Jun 12, 2024 | Motorcycle Accidents

If you’re a rider or cyclist in the Tar Heel State, you likely enjoy the beautiful landscapes and pleasant weather. However, you shouldn’t get so caught up in the beautiful scenery that you forget about the rules of the road.

When you’re well conversant with the regulations that govern bike and motorcycle use, you’re better positioned to look out for your safety. Understanding the rules of the road is particularly crucial if you share the road with larger vehicles often.

Bicycles: Obeying the laws and staying visible

If you’re predominantly a cyclist, you should know that the Tar Heel State recognizes your bicycle as a vehicle. Therefore, you have similar rights and responsibilities as motorists. Therefore, you’re not exempt from following traffic signals.

When you’re cycling, try to make sure you occupy a full lane of traffic and yield the right of way to other vehicles when necessary. During your trips, you’re safer cycling close to the edge of the road. However, when you’re preparing to make a left turn, it’s recommended that you move towards the center of your lane.

Suppose you enjoy cycling in the evenings or at night; you are required to invest in a white headlight and a red taillight. You might also want to accessorize your bicycle with reflective gear and wear a reflective jacket yourself.

Motorcyclists: Gearing up for safety

If you prefer the speed a little more speed, a motorcycle is likely your vehicle of choice. There’s something quite exhilarating about the sound of the engine and the freedom of the open road. Whether you’re a first-time biker or an experienced one, you should always have a valid motorcycle license.

Additionally, before setting out for a ride, always try to ensure that your machine has:

  • A clean and well-positioned mirror
  • Functional headlights, taillights and brake lights
  • An audible horn

Moreover, you should always wear a DOT-approved helmet to protect your head in case of any collisions.

If you have biker buddies, you should know that riding side-by-side in a single lane is illegal in the Tar Heel State. You and your biker friends should also always yield the right of way, observe speed limits and obey traffic signals.

Whether you are cycling through North Carolina’s scenic routes or cruising on a motorcycle, understanding and following the rules of the road is essential for your safety and confidence. Yet, despite your best efforts, suppose you get involved in an accident because another road user mixed up traffic rules; it’s wise to learn as much as you can about your legal rights and options for compensation.