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Christensen & Hymas

UTah Bicycle Accident Lawyer

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The Utah bicycle accident lawyers at Christensen & Hymas love to cycle. We know first-hand the dangers that cycling can present. Without two tons of metal as protection, cyclists are among the most vulnerable travelers on the road. Unfortunately, many drivers do not give cyclists the room and the respect they deserve.

If you have been the victim of a bicycle accident, you deserve the best for your case. The bicycle accident lawyers at Christensen & Hymas specialize in helping victims claim fair compensation with dedicated legal representation and an exceptional client experience. We will be your advocates to protect your rights on the road. Bicycle accidents happen, and when they do, Christensen & Hymas is here to help.

ken christensen riding a bike

Experienced Attorneys for Bike Accidents in Utah

Have you been injured in a bicycle crash? Contact our lawyers at (801) 506-0800 for your free consultation. Plus, you can use our convenient messaging feature to contact a member of our team immediately.

Our bicycle accident attorneys offer representation throughout Utah with offices in Salt Lake City and the surrounding area, including Bountiful and Orem/Provo.

How Christensen & Hymas Can Help With Your Bicycle Accident Claim

Christensen & Hymas bicycle accident lawyers and car accident lawyers can assist in your bicycle accident claim by helping you navigate the legal system and maximizing your settlement. Here are just some of the ways our dedicated attorneys support our clients:

  • Evaluating the claim with expert eyes so that you know what your claim is worth
  • Speaking directly with the insurance company so that you don’t have to
  • Guidance when deciding if you should accept a settlement or continue forward with the claim
  • Gathering evidence and developing a legal strategy for you
  • Contacting witnesses and building expert testimony
  • Handling your case as quickly as possible using our legal experience and support team
  • Friendly communication and education about the law throughout the process
  • Intelligence, determination, and compassion applied to your case at every opportunity
  • Legal representation with a free consultation and no fee unless you win

We know how frustrating and overwhelming it can be to take on the insurance company on your own. That’s why we designed our Utah bicycle accident practice to work on your behalf towards a positive outcome. We fight for the financial relief you deserve so that you can rebuild your life without the burden of medical expenses and unpaid bills.

With positive testimonials from clients, our lawyers have the training and experience to fight for your rights and help you achieve a positive result for your claim. We tailor our representation to your individual needs and goals and support you throughout the process. 

Recommended Resources From The Good Guys Bicycle Accident Lawyers

Our bicycle accident law firm does all we can to help educate Utah cyclists on preventing wrecks, as well as what to do if bicycle injuries occur. The firm has a track record of successfully handling bicycle accident cases. We also prioritize educating the cycling community about their rights, resources, and insurance options after an accident.

To help with that, we have made The Utah Bicycle Accident Handbook available to all Utah residents for free.

Get your free Utah Bicycle Accident Handbook today!

Why Do You Need a Bicycle Accident Lawyer?

You need a bicycle accident lawyer to make sure you’re getting the full value of what your case is worth. It’s the goal of the insurance company to pay as little as possible for your claim. Without the legal knowledge and experience of a professional on your side, it can be hard to know if the other party is being fair.

Our lawyers for bicycle accidents know how to fight back against the insurance company. We have the know-how to fairly value the case, develop an appropriate legal strategy and avoid the tricks that the insurance companies use to delay cases and deny deserving victims. We’ll help you claim compensation for all your damages, including:

  • Medical expenses
  • Property damage
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Future medical care, including physical therapy
  • Pain and suffering

You deserve fair treatment throughout the claims process. With Christensen & Hymas at your side, you have determined bicycle accident victim advocates who get results.

bicyclist hit by a car

We Know How a Bicycle Accident Affects Victims and Families

When looking for a trusted bicycle injury lawyer, we invite you to call or message the Christensen & Hymas legal team. You need the best Utah bicycle injury attorneys for you and your family, and we’re here to help.

We have built our law firm based on our own personal experiences of fighting for justice after a family member suffered a serious accident. That’s why they call us The Good Guys in personal injury law. With a foundation of compassion, drive, and intelligence, our law firm provides trusted professional representation for each victim and support for their family.

Types of Claims Our Bicycle Accident Attorneys Represent

Our bicycle accident attorneys can represent you in any of the following types of claims:

  • Negligence claims and driving errors
  • Reckless driving, intentional misconduct, and road rage
  • Traffic errors, including speeding, failing to yield, disobeying stop signs, and more
  • Distracted driving, texting while driving
  • Drunk driving, DUI, Operating Under the Influence, Operating While Intoxicated
  • Faulty vehicle design and vehicle malfunction
  • Catastrophic and complex injury claims, including paralysis, broken bones, whiplash, and loss of bodily function
  • Cases that involve multiple bicycles; numerous victim claims
  • Uninsured and underinsured motorist claims
  • Insurance company denials, appeals, and low-ball offers

We have experience representing victims with a wide range of legal issues of all complexities. Let our bicycle accident attorneys identify and navigate the legal issues in your case. We guarantee satisfaction and an exceptional client experience from the moment you hire us to when we achieve successful results in your case.

We Always Deliver on Our Promises

What To Do If You’ve Been Involved in a Cycling Crash In Utah

If you’ve been involved in a cycling crash in Utah, how you respond can impact the entire outcome of the case. When a bicycle crash occurs, you should take the following steps:

  • Move to immediate safety 
  • Summon emergency services
  • Provide first aid to the extent that you are able until someone with more advanced training can take over
  • Receive medical care if there is even a slight possibility of injury
  • Call the police as required by Utah law 41-6a-401.3¹
  • Gather information from all drivers involved, including driver’s license, full name, address, date of birth, vehicle license, registration, and insurance information
  • Identify and get contact information from all potential witnesses
  • Take photos of the accident scene, including vehicles involved, the bicycle, and the entire accident scene
  • Observe the location and circumstances of the accident for any information that may be helpful
  • Continue to receive follow-up medical care to identify and document injuries
  • Report the accident to insurance
  • Involve a bicycle accident attorney as soon as possible

Reacting quickly and correctly can make your claim faster and easier and allow you to reach the result you deserve. The sooner you involve a lawyer, the sooner you have an experienced team helping you navigate every step in the process.

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Bicycle Accident Statistics

The last few decades have produced some interesting trends in cycling. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)², cycling has increased in the U.S, both in total numbers and as a percentage of the population, over the last ten years. As a method of transportation, however, bicycles are still only used about 1% of the time. Though cycling accounts for a lower percentage of usage, cycling still presents dangers:

According to the most recent national statistics from 2020³, more than 600 cyclists are killed, and an additional 48,000 were injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes. The most deadly year for cyclists to date was 2018, with 857 deaths.

bicycle accident with a car

Where do bicycle deaths happen?

The majority of pedal cyclist fatalities in 2020 occurred in:

  • Urban areas: 35%
  • Suburban: 31.9%
  • Rural: 33.1%

When are bicycle accidents most likely to occur?

The two deadliest months for cyclists in 2020 were July and August. Here are the number of deaths each month:

  • January: 44
  • February: 26
  • March: 43
  • April: 40
  • May: 66
  • June: 67
  • July 84
  • August: 81
  • September: 60
  • October: 67
  • November: 60
  • December: 59

Genders of cyclist fatalities?

The majority of the pedal cyclists killed or injured in 2020 were males:

  • Men: 80.1%
  • Women: 12.8%
  • Unknown: 7.2% 

Utah State Bicycle Accident Statistics

In Utah, an average of 6 cyclists are killed, and 850 are reported seriously injured each year. Nearly 60% of bicyclists involved in a bicycle/motor vehicle crash are younger than 20 years of age, and more than three-fourths (79%) are male.

Bicycle Helmet Statistics

Utah has no state laws requiring the use of a helmet while riding a bicycle. In other states with helmet laws on the books, polls showed an 8.4% average increase in helmet usage. Bicycle helmets can reduce the risk of head injury by as much as 85%, according to Cleveland Clinic⁴.

On a positive note, a statewide helmet observational survey conducted in Utah in 2007 showed that 23% of elementary school-age bicyclists, 14% of secondary school-age bicyclists, and 58% of adult bicyclists wear bicycle helmets (Utah Department of Public Safety)⁵.

Utah Bike Safety Guidelines

While you can never control the behavior of reckless or inattentive motorists, you can significantly reduce your chances of being injured in a bicycle accident by following some basic guidelines:

  • Follow the Rules of the Road – Bicycles are (in most cases) legally considered moving vehicles in the State of Utah. Obey all traffic signs and lane markers.
  • Ride WITH Traffic – Never ride against the flow of traffic. Always cycle on the right-hand side of the road.
  • Be cautious when passing on the right – Utah cyclists are allowed to use the shoulder to pass slower-moving vehicles on the left, but only as long as they can do so safely.
  • Don’t use headphones while cycling – It’s essential to listen to the environment around you. Listening to an iPod or radio can be distracting and is especially dangerous in urban areas.
  • Dress to be seen – Even during the day, wear brightly colored clothing so motorists can easily spot you. At night, utilize reflective clothing to stand out in the dark.
  • Use lights at night – Utah law says that a bicycle must be equipped with a headlight in front and a rear red reflector in the back.
  • Use proper hand signals – Cyclists must give appropriate hand signals to turn right, left, change lanes or stop.

Bicycle safety is important to Christensen & Hymas, as we’re sure it is for you. As avid cyclists, our goal is to provide a base of knowledge where anyone can find helpful facts, safety tips, and more. We encourage all cyclists to educate themselves about the law and safe practices to make the road a safer place for cyclists and motorists alike.

Paramedics helping injured cyclist

Utah Bicycle Laws and Bicycle Accident FAQs                            

Utah State law has a thorough code of Utah bicycle laws⁶, which we’ll cover here. The laws establish proper bicycle operations for keeping the roadways safe. Bicycles are considered moving vehicles. They are subject to Utah traffic laws governing vehicles, with a few exceptions. Understanding bicycle laws will help you avoid an accident or identify liability if a crash occurs.

What is a “bicycle” under Utah law?

  1. Utah law defines a bicycle as a wheeled vehicle propelled by human power, by feet or hands acting upon pedals or cranks. It also contains a seat or saddle designed for the operator to be used on the ground. Wheels must be greater than 14 inches in diameter to be considered a bicycle. A “Bicycle” also includes an electric-assisted bicycle, but not scooters and similar devices.
  2. “Electric-assisted bicycle” means a moped powered solely by the electric motor, has fully operable pedals on permanently affixed cranks, and weighs less than 75 pounds (Utah law 41-6a-102⁷).

What is the direction of traffic for a bicycle in Utah?

A bicycle must ride with the flow or direction of traffic in the same manner as other automobiles (§1105).

Does a bicyclist have to use the shoulder of the road in Utah?

If the bicycle is traveling slower than the flow of traffic, a cyclist must ride as close to the shoulder or right-hand edge of the roadway as is practical, except in cases of:

  1. Passing another bicycle or vehicle
  2. Preparing to make a left turn
  3. Riding straight through an intersection just to the left of vehicles turning right
  4. Necessarily avoiding unsafe conditions along the right-hand edge of the road, such as fixed or moving objects, parked or moving vehicles, other bicycles or pedestrians
  5. If a useable pathway alongside the road is available, a traffic-control device may direct bicyclers to use it and not the road (§1105).

Can bicycles ride side-by-side in Utah? How many bikes can ride side-by-side?

In Utah, no more than two cyclists may ride side by side at any time. While riding side-by-side, they may not impede the normal flow of traffic. If traffic is restricted, single file rules must be followed (§1105.3).

two woman riding bikes side by side on the road

What is the 3-foot rule for motorists passing cyclists?

The 3-foot rule says that motorists may not be within 3 feet of a moving bicycle even when passing (Sec. 706.5). When passing a cyclist, a driver may cross the center line, if necessary, to provide adequate space and distance to the cyclist, provided the pass can be made safely. A pass may not be made within 100 feet of an intersection or when approaching a curve in the road that obstructs the motorist’s view (Sec. 701).

Is sidewalk racing allowed in Utah?

Many cities along the Wasatch Front have ordinances in place which prohibit bicycle riding on sidewalks. A cyclist may not ride on a sidewalk, path, trail or across a crosswalk when prohibited by city or county ordinances. In some cities, only certain streets/areas are not permitted. If riding on the sidewalk is allowed, the cyclist must yield to pedestrians. No cyclist can overtake or pass a pedestrian without first giving an audible signal. They cannot ride in a careless manner that may cause them to collide with a pedestrian, another bicycle or a vehicle (§1106).

How does a bicyclist cross an intersection in Utah?

A bicycle has the same rights and obligations as any vehicle at an intersection in Utah. The following rules apply to motorists and cyclists alike:

  1. If there is no traffic light (or the traffic light is not working), any driver/cyclist approaching the intersection white line must yield the right-of-way to other drivers/cyclists already at the intersection, no matter the direction from which they are coming.
  2. If two vehicles arrive simultaneously at an intersection, and there is no traffic light signal, the vehicle on the left must yield the right-of-way to the vehicle on the right.
  3. If the roadway does not continue through the intersection, the vehicle must yield the right-of-way to the intersecting highway.
  4. A vehicle on an unpaved road yields the right-of-way to the vehicle on a paved road.
  5. When directed by a traffic light or stop sign, a vehicle must stop before the designated white stop line (unless otherwise directed by a police officer).
  6. When approaching a stop sign, a vehicle must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians at an adjacent crosswalk.
  7. A bicycle may ride straight through an intersection on the left side of a right-hand turning lane.
  8. A left-turning vehicle at an intersection yields the right-of-way to oncoming traffic (§901/902/1105).

How does a bicycle make a left turn?

If a left turn is necessary, a cyclist has two options:

  1. Use the left-hand turn lane designated for vehicles
  2. Stay on the right-hand side of the roadway, ride through the intersection to the opposite side, stop, and wait for the light to change. Then, going in a new direction, cross the street with the flow of traffic (§801/1108).

Do bicyclists have to obey stoplights and stop signs?

Yes, cyclists must obey all traffic lights, stop and yield signs, and must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians at an adjacent crosswalk (Sec. 305/902).

If a cyclist age 16 or older comes to a complete stop at a red light and the traffic signal does not detect their presence after waiting for 90 seconds or more, the cyclist may cautiously proceed through the intersection, as long as no other vehicles or pedestrians with the right-of-way are in or near the intersection (Sec. 305). 

group of bicyclists stopped at a traffic light

What are the hand signal rules for bicyclists?

Cyclists must give proper hand signals to turn right, turn left, change lanes, or stop. The hand signal must be executed at least two seconds before the maneuver. Still, the cyclist does not need to maintain a continuous signal if their hand is required for safety purposes.

  1. The proper hand signals are: 
    1. Left turn—left hand and arm extended horizontally;
    2. Right turn—left hand and arm extended upward or right hand and arm extended horizontally;
    3. Stop or decrease speed—left hand and arm extended downward (§804)
  2. Once stopped in a designated turn lane, cyclists are not required to signal again before turning (§1109).

Can bicycles pass on the right?

Yes. Cyclists are allowed to utilize the roadway’s shoulder to pass a vehicle on the right. They may only do so if the move can be made with safety.

Does a bicyclist have to walk through a crosswalk?

Walking your bicycle through a crosswalk is not required by law. However, walking a bike through a crosswalk may be a safe way to cross the street. The law states that a cyclist may not ride at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the existing conditions while paying attention to any potential hazards (§1106.4).

Is bicycle racing prohibited in Utah?

Never race bicycles on roads unless authorized by state or county officials (§1111).

Do bicyclists need both hands on the handlebars at all times?

All cyclists must have at least one hand on the handlebars at all times. In addition, a cyclist is not permitted to carry packages, packs, bundles, or any other article that prevents them from keeping both hands on the handlebars when necessary (§1112).

woman cyclist riding with both hands on the handlebars

What is the number of persons allowed on a bicycle?

A bicycle may only carry the number of persons for which it is designed. Single-rider bicycles are not permitted to carry more than one person (§1103).

Can a bicycle attach to a moving vehicle?

A cyclist may never be attached to a moving motorized vehicle (§1104).

Where can you park a bicycle in Utah?

A person may park their bicycle on a sidewalk as long as it is not prohibited by a traffic-control device and does not impede the normal flow of pedestrian traffic.

A person may park their bicycle in the roadway anywhere parking is allowed as long as it is parked within 12 inches of the curb and does not block any other legally parked vehicles (§1107/1402).

What reflectors and lights have to be on bicycles in Utah?

Bicycles must be equipped with a white headlight, a red taillight or reflector, and side reflectors, all visible from 500 feet. Lights must be turned on a half-hour after sunset and kept on until a half-hour before sunrise (§1114/1603).

safe bicyclist with reflectors

Can a bicycle have a whistle or a siren?

Bicycles may not be equipped with a whistle or a siren (§1113).

What brakes must a bicycle have?

Bicycles must have proper, functioning brakes. The brakes must have the capacity to stop the bike within 25 feet traveling at a speed of 10 miles per hour (§1113).

Am I insured when I am riding my bicycle and get in an accident?

If you ride bicycles in Utah, your car insurance covers bicycle accident costs, including damages, lost wages, and medical bills. Of course, you must have car insurance and purchase the amount and types of coverage to meet your needs.

When should I hire a bicycle injury attorney?

If you have incurred significant medical costs (more than $3,000) and the insurance company isn’t willing to fully reimburse you, you should definitely consult with a bicycle accident attorney. Insurance companies will often try to pressure accident victims into making an official statement and settle for less money than the sum of injury costs. An attorney can help establish a much fairer settlement.

Have More Bicycle Law Questions?

Were you injured in a bicycle accident? If so, you owe it to yourself and your family to contact Christensen & Hymas, the go-to lawyers in Utah for bicycle accidents.

If you would like to read the laws in their entirety, visit the official website of the Utah State Legislature.

No Fees Until We Deliver on Our Promise

Our bicycle accident attorneys come with a no-fee guarantee. That means there is no fee for our services unless you win your case and are completely satisfied with the results. See how dedicated our legal professionals are to ensuring that our fellow community members get the legal representation they deserve when they suffer from bicycle accident injuries.

Contact Our Utah Bicycle Accident Lawyers for a Free Consultation

We understand how to deal with difficult insurance companies and protect the rights of cyclists. Work with the lawyers who have the intelligence, determination and compassion to advocate for you. See why we’re known as the Good Guys in Utah personal injury law. Call us at (801) 506-0800 to get started. We’re ready to help.

Good Guys Legal Team Photo

Want more information? Check out these great resources:

Bicycling Laws Presented By Bike Utah

Mountain Biking Trails in Utah

Bicycling Advocacy Toolkit

Legal References:

¹Utah law 41-6a-401.3

²National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Traffic Safety Facts: Bicyclists and Other Cyclists. Retrieved 1 July 2021.

³Fox, Maura and Whelan, Luke. Outside Online. (29 January 2021). What We Learned from Tracking Cycling Deaths for a Year. Retrieved 1 July 2021.

⁴Cleveland Clinic. (30 January 2019). Bicycle Helmet Safety. Retrieved 1 July 2021.

⁵Utah Department of Public Safety. Utah Highway Safety Office. Bicycle Safety & Laws. Retrieved 1 July 2021.

Utah law 41-6a-11

Utah law 41-6a-102