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Brown & Szaller - Kenneth Knabe, Attorney
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Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney
Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney

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Brown & Szaller - Kenneth Knabe, Attorney's posts

What to do after a Bike Crash Caused by an Unsafe Driver?
By Kenneth J Knabe, Greater Cleveland’s Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney representing the rights of fellow cyclists injured by unsafe drivers. 216 228 7200. wwwbrownandszaller.com

1. Call 911 if injured!
2. Call the Police!
3. Absolutely and unequivocally insist that police report is filled out for the crash. Do not let the at-fault driver or even the police talk you out of it no matter what they say. The only one that benefits from not having a police report is the at fault party who may later deny everything. If they do, where is your proof w/o a police report? Amazingly, some police officers discourage reporting or may even try to broker a deal between you and the at-fault party. Don’t buy into anything but a full report on the incident and an appropriate citation to the at-fault driver.
4. Record the driver’s name, address, and insurance information, including the insurance policy number. Record it in your cell phone if you have no other means.
5. Take pictures of the crash scene, your damaged bike and the driver’s license plate with your cell phone
6. If the driver fails to stop, try to record the license plate number, color and model of the vehicle. Absolutely look for witnesses that saw it happen and get their full names and addresses so you have independent corroborative evidence of the hit and run and you can then collect under your auto policy coverage for being hit by an uninsured motorist. (Make sure you have “U” coverage under your auto policy!)
7. Record the responding Officer’s name, district and the report number.
8. Obtain the name of all witnesses, their phone numbers, and addresses.
9. Preserve all evidence. Don’t discard your damaged bike, helmet or torn clothes.
10. Call me for a free consultation and guidance on handling your claim. Do not talk to the at-fault insurance company until you talk to me. I will help you with the property damage and preserve it as evidence for no cost if I am also handling your serious injury claim. Mistakes can and will be made unless you swiftly talk to a fellow cyclist and experienced bicycle personal injury lawyer Kenneth Knabe, 14222 Madison Avenue, Lakewood, Ohio 44140. Phone: 216-228-7200. E-mail: Knabe@brownandszaller.com.

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Ohio’s 3-Foot Passing law, Ohio Revised Code (ORC) §4511.27 eff. 3-19-17 ORC §4511.132-the dead red exception, eff. 3-19-17

Kenneth Knabe: Greater Cleveland’s Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney. Representing the rights of fellow cyclists injured by unsafe drivers. 216 228-7200; www.brownandszaller.com

Bicycling is the second-most popular outdoor activity; commuter cycling is also on a steady upswing with an alarming increase in bicycle accidents and even deaths, especially in the Greater Cleveland area. Ohio has recognized this increase in cycling and accidents and has joined numerous other States in passing the three-foot safe distance passing law. Many thanks to The Bikeclevland.org, Ohio Bicycle Federation, Ohio House and Senate, and the Governor for passing much-needed bicycle safety law on a state wide basis.
Ohio’s three-foot minimum safe distance passing requirement, ORC §4511.27 and the “dead red” exception, ORC §4511.132 were signed into law on December 19, 2016 and become effective March 19, 2017

Under newly-enacted ORC §4511.27(A)(1) & (2), a driver of a car passing a cyclist riding in the same direction shall pass to the left at a distance of three feet or more, and shall not drive again to the right until the driver's vehicle has safely cleared the cyclist. (This rule does not apply at intersections controlled by traffic control signals.) Upon the car’s audible signal, the cyclist being passed must give way to the right in favor of the overtaking car, and the cyclist shall not increase speed until completely passed by the car. A driver that violates this section is guilty of a minor misdemeanor unless convicted of one or more “predicate motor vehicle or traffic offenses” which include most other traffic offenses. See ORC §4511.27 (B) & §4511.01 (III) (1)

ORC §4511.132 was amended to permit a cyclist to stop and then safely enter an intersection on “dead red”. This occurs when a red light is not tripped to green because of failing to detect a vehicle, i.e. a bicycle. This is not a license for cyclists to ride through red lights but a specific exception when the light fails to detect the presence of a bicycle and stays red. Entering must be done with great caution and in complete deference to cars entering the intersection on green who have the right of way.

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LEGAL TIPS FROM A FELLOW CYCLIST (2016)

By Attorney Kenneth J Knabe - Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Lawyer representing cyclist injured by unsafe drivers.

After years of cycling, being hit by a car myself, reviewing bicycle statutes, writing articles on bicycle safety and representing many injured fellow cyclists, I respectfully present what rules cyclists must follow on the road, what cyclist's can do to be safer and what bicyclists need to know about insurance.

Ohio Law requires that a Cyclist must:
• Obey the same traffic rules applicable to cars. Stop at stop signs, red lights and yield to pedestrians on the sidewalk. Do not speed. Ride in the direction of traffic. As an added benefit, cyclists who follow these rules are in 75% fewer accidents.
• Have an illuminated white light in front and a red light in the back, from dusk to dawn. Consult your local bike shop to comply with the light adequacy requirements and placement. Lights are legally right at night!
• Ride to the right of the lane unless a dangerous or hazardous condition exists.
• Use these hand signals if stopping or slowing, turning or moving right or left.

If you are hit by a car when you are observant and following these traffic laws, you will likely have the RIGHT OF WAY and greatly improve your chances of recovering for your bike damage and injury, if applicable.

Cyclists should also consider these non-mandated additional safety tips to avoid injury:

• Wear a helmet. Ohio law does not mandate the wearing of a helmet, but some cities require helmets, especially for minors. Two-thirds or more of fatally injured bicyclists were not wearing helmets.
• Stay EXTREMELY visible by wearing contrasting and reflective clothing and extra front and back lights. Bright is right, day and night.
• Announce your intentions, i.e., “passing on the left” or “on your left” or “on your right”.

All road cyclists should know this about insurance:
• Every cyclist who owns a car should always insist on having uninsured motorist coverage (‘U’ Coverage) under their auto insurance policy. This will cover you if you are hit by a careless driver with no or inadequate insurance, and can even cover a hit and run driver under certain conditions. You have to specifically ask your insurance agent or company for this U coverage, as the requirement no longer exists to automatically offer this coverage.
• If you don’t own a car and are not a family member covered under an auto policy, or you ride an electric bike, you should purchase a separate bike insurance policy.

Kenneth Knabe
Brown and Szaller Co. LPA
14222 Madison Avenue
Lakewood, Ohio 44107
216 228 7200
knabe@brownandszaller.com
www.BrownandSzaller.com
“I take it personally when a fellow cyclist is hit by a careless driver!”

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A solution to the bicycle vs. car dilemma?
By Attorney & Cyclist Kenneth J Knabe - Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney representing the rights of cyclists injured by unsafe drivers.
216 228 7200
www.brownandszaller.com

Road bicyclists are many varying types: commuters, messengers, hipsters, social, hard-core and recreational. With the “green” revolution in alternate transportation, the proliferation of bike lane access, and the social and fitness benefits, bicycling is very popular in the Greater Cleveland area. Unfortunately, so are crashes - about 50,000 a year around the country. The National Governors Highway Safety Association reports bicyclist deaths increased sixteen percent between 2010 and 2012, while motor vehicle fatalities increased just one percent during the same time period.

We have all heard of someone getting hit or killed on a bike. The cyclist never wins in a crash with a three to four thousand pound vehicle. Broken bones, as well as serious long-lasting, debilitating injuries, and even death, can and do occur. Despite helmets, concussions occur frequently.
Humans are territorial. Drivers focus on their destination and dislike obstructions. Many drivers rationalize their self-interest and think they alone own the road. They openly detest cyclists, believing they “get what they deserve” for riding on the road; after all, they pay licensing fees and cyclists don’t. Drivers expect cyclists to ride on metropark’s recreational trails despite numerous “Share the Road” signs and the danger of cycling 18-20 mph on a recreational trail populated with baby strollers and slow walkers. Cyclists exercise their legal right to ride on the road but some ignore basic traffic rules, further infuriating drivers.

The bottom line is that Ohio law requires cyclists and drivers to share the road within its legal parameters. Regardless of what territorial side of the road you are on, cyclists are here to stay and drivers must pay more attention to them to avoid needless serious and even catastrophic injuries.


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In a bike accident? What about the bike/property property damage?
By Kenneth J. Knabe - Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Lawyer, representing the rights of cyclists injured by unsafe drivers.
216 228 7200
www.brownandszaller.com

First, if you are hit by an unsafe driver and injured, call an experienced bike lawyer. (See my contact info above)

Property damage (PD) is a key component in any bike crash. The damaged bike frame, components, cycling computer, ripped handlebar tape, ripped seat, torn clothes, scuffed bike shoes, and cracked, bloodied or broken helmet are critically important pieces of evidence. A reputable bike shop will help establish a dollar value for the frame, wheels, rims and numerous other components and gear. Liability carriers will usually quickly pay a bike PD claim if your photos, receipts and estimates are in order.
Even after settling the PD, keep the damaged parts to corroborate the physical injuries. Remember also that to make a valid uninsured motorist claim in Ohio, you must have independent corroborative evidence. The bike frame damage may constitute that evidence. Also, look for paint stains on the frame from the hit and run vehicle. Many cyclists ride with video cameras to document driver error and road rage.


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New raffle addition to the front/back bike lights for the annual bikeclevland.org meeting this Sunday at the Nash. The safety message::"Stay Alert Fellow Cyclists!" Kenneth Knabe, Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney.







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http://www.velonews.com/2017/01/news/105-year-old-frenchman-sets-hour-record_427263
Cycling is the fountain of youth! Kenneth Knabe - Greater Cleveland's Bicycle Accident & Safety Attorney representing fellow cyclists injured by unsafe drivers.

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We are now one of the featured Attorneys publishing legal articles on Bike Cleveland's new website. To view our articles: http://www.bikecleveland.org/resources/bikes-and-the-law/ Thanks Bike Cleveland!

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