One of the greatest lessons learned in life is the importance of sharing. This lesson becomes especially relevant when it comes to sharing the roadways. When sharing the roads with bicycles and vehicles, many people often ignore the valuable lesson of safely and politely sharing the road. Whether you are a behind the wheel of your car or behind the handlebars of a ten-speed, here are some tips to keep in mind when cruising the streets.

Pay attention

When driving a car, put the phone away, turn down the radio, and concentrate on the road. Lots of times vehicles and cyclists collide because drivers are focused on everything but the road. Not paying attention can be dangerous for you, other drivers, and bicyclists.

Be nice

Cyclists can be frustrating for motorist, especially during rush hour traffic. However, remember cyclists have just the same rights to be on the road as the driver does. Yelling, cursing, and throwing things at the cyclist won’t help you get to your destination any faster. As a matter of fact, any of this erratic behavior may be used against you in a legal matter. If you are involved in an accident with a cyclist, this behavior will only create an uphill battle for your auto accident attorney. The bottom line is you don’t own the road. If a cyclist is intentionally causing a problem, the best course of action is to safely maneuver around them and avoid an altercation.

Watch the turns

Sometimes cyclists have their own lanes on the road. However, these lanes are often narrow, making it easy for a cyclist to accidently weave outside of the lane and into traffic. Whether you are turning left or right, be cognizant of how a bicyclist maneuvers and slow down while making your turn. Treat a bicyclist like you would a pedestrian. In fact, brushing up on your state’s pedestrian laws will help you to better navigate your way around a cyclist. This will not only help you avoid an accident with a cyclist, but it will also help your car accident attorney in your case if for any reason you’re involved in an accident and the bicyclist claims that you weren’t following the law.

Don’t Tailgate

Don’t be that driver, or bicyclist for that matter, who gets irritated with the biker or driver in front of you so much that you end up riding too close to their rear. That type of aggressive driving is not only rude, but it is also extremely dangerous. A good rule of thumb is to give bicyclists a minimum of three feet clearance. In fact, most state laws require a driver to give at least three feet of clearance for any car or bicycle in front of them.

The Consequences of a Collision

In the unfortunate event that you do become involved in an accident with a cyclist, you may be found to be at fault. This is especially true if you’ve been accused of violating your state’s bicyclist rights laws.

That is why it is important that if you do get into an accident with a cyclist, seek an auto accident attorney as soon as possible.