Even though you’re riding on two wheels rather than driving on four, there are still plenty of rules and restrictions placed on you as a motorcyclist under Pennsylvania law. Most of the rules for motorcycles and cars are exactly the same, from basic traffic laws to more specific regulations on driving while drunk or high and general expectations for how to be respectful and responsible on the road.
There are a few unique motorcycle laws in Reading worth discussing in greater detail, as well as some ways Pennsylvania’s approach to motorcycles differs from that of other states. A seasoned motorcycle accident lawyer can further explain any regulations.
Motorcycle Helmet Rules
While some states require all motorcycle riders to wear protective helmets while riding, Pennsylvania doesn’t. The law only requires motorcycle operators and passengers in Reading under 21 to wear helmets under all circumstances, and riders over 21 are exempt from this requirement when they have two years or more of riding experience.
The state does require all riders to wear some form of eye protection—such as goggles, a face shield, or ideally a visor attached to a motorcycle helmet—while riding, regardless of their age or experience level. When helmet requirements do apply, a rider’s helmet must meet specifications set by the federal Department of Transportation and be properly fitted and secured while the motorcycle is in motion.
Motorcycle Equipment Requirements
All motorcycles operated on public roads in Reading must have a muffler that meets all the specifications set by state law, as well as at least one—but no more than two—working headlamps to ensure safe visibility for the person operating the motorcycle and other drivers on the road. All motorcycles must be equipped with at least one mirror, providing the rider with an unobstructed view behind them.
Are There Special Traffic Laws for Motorcyclists?
Virtually all the traffic laws and vehicle regulations that apply to motor vehicle operators in Reading also apply to motorcyclists, including right-of-way laws, stop sign and stoplight regulations, and speed limits. Motorcycle operators are required to carry at least $15,000 of bodily injury liability insurance coverage per person and $30,000 of bodily injury coverage per accident, as well as coverage for property damage.
State law differs from other states in prohibiting motorcycle riders from “lane splitting”—riding on top of the lines between traffic lanes—under any circumstances. Riders can ride two abreast with another motorcyclist within the same traffic lane, so long as they do not attempt to pass any other vehicle within their same lane.
A Reading Attorney Can Explain Motorcycle Laws in More Detail
Even if you’re aware of all the motorcycle laws in Reading applicable to you, it may be more important for you to know how to enforce your rights under civil law. Complying with the law yourself can only do so much to protect you from getting hurt in an accident caused by someone else breaking the law. When you’re not familiar with how to demand civil compensation after an incident, you may have no choice but to pay for the losses you did nothing to deserve.
Assistance is available from experienced legal professionals who know how to fight and win on behalf of people just like you. Call Ostroff Godshall Injury and Accident Lawyers today to learn more.