Although motorcycles are different in many ways from cars and trucks, they are still considered “motor vehicles” when it comes to enforcing traffic laws in Pennsylvania. This means that if you’re riding a motorcycle in or around Bensalem, you should be aware of all the standard traffic laws for drivers in the area as well as a few unique rules for motorcycles.
Staying in line with Bensalem motorcycle traffic laws can be vital to reducing your risk of getting hurt in a traffic accident. It can also be important for preserving your right to file a lawsuit if someone else’s irresponsible behavior causes a wreck. Consult the knowledgeable attorneys at Ostroff Godshall Injury and Accident Lawyers about the relevant laws if you were recently involved in a crash.
Use and Misuse of Traffic Lanes
Many states allow motorcyclists to “split lanes” at traffic lights and stop signs—in other words, to move between other vehicles and advance past a traffic buildup rather than waiting at the back of a long line of cars. However, lane splitting is illegal in Pennsylvania for motorcyclists and all motorists, whether at an intersection or on a road with more than one lane.
Along the same lines, motorcycle traffic laws in Bensalem prohibit riders from riding two or more abreast within a single lane of traffic, regardless of whether other vehicles are nearby. Likewise, motorcyclists cannot overtake and pass other vehicles while sharing the same lane. Instead, they must change to another traffic lane for the overtaking maneuver.
It is worth emphasizing, though, that Pennsylvania law entitles motorcyclists to the full use of a traffic lane. This means that motorcyclists have a right to the same amount of space in all directions as any other vehicle on the road. As a Bensalem lawyer can explain, any driver who crowds a motorcyclist within a traffic lane and causes a crash may be civilly liable for the resulting damages.
Do Traffic Laws for Cars Apply to Motorcyclists?
Under local motorcycle traffic laws, motorcyclists are subject to all the same restrictions and traffic regulations as standard motor vehicle drivers. In other words, motorcyclists must obey all street signs and road markings, yield the right-of-way when appropriate, and keep a safe distance from pedestrians.
That said, a recent change to Pennsylvania law in 2016 allowed motorcycle and bicycle riders—as well as other motor vehicle drivers when applicable—to treat red lights as stop signs if the vehicle-detection system attached to that light fails to recognize the operator’s vehicle. In other words, if you end up waiting several cycles at a traffic light without a green light, you can advance safely through the intersection if there is no oncoming traffic, even if the light remains red. For more information on traffic laws affecting motorcyclists, talk to a Bensalem lawyer at our firm.
Consult a Bensalem Attorney About Motorcycle Traffic Laws
Pennsylvania law essentially treats motorcyclists as equal to motor vehicle drivers. With relatively few exceptions, you have all the same responsibilities while riding, as well as all the same rights and privileges.
If someone else violated your rights on the road and caused a collision, a seasoned lawyer can explain the Bensalem motorcycle traffic laws and use this legal knowledge to build a strong case for compensation. Call Ostroff Godshall Injury and Accident Lawyers today to learn more. You won’t owe us anything until we win the payments you deserve, so don’t hesitate to reach out for a free consultation.