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Moped & Motorcycle Accidents

In Florida, where the weather and scenery is beautiful year ‘round, moped and motorcycle usage is on the rise. It makes sense, travel by moped or motorcycle can be more convenient and fuel efficient than other motor vehicles. An overview of Florida law:

316.208 Motorcycles and mopeds.

(1) Any person operating a motorcycle or moped shall be granted all of the rights and shall be subject to all of the duties applicable to the driver of any other vehicle under this chapter, except as to special regulations in this chapter and except as to those provisions of this chapter which by their nature can have no application.

(2)(a) Any person operating a moped upon a roadway at less than the normal speed of traffic at the time and place and under the conditions then existing shall ride as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway except under any of the following situations:

1. When overtaking or passing another vehicle proceeding in the same direction.

2. When preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.

3. When reasonably necessary to avoid any condition, including, but not limited to, a fixed or moving object, parked or moving vehicle, bicycle, pedestrian, animal, surface hazard, or substandard-width lane, that makes it unsafe to continue along the right-hand curb or edge. For purposes of this paragraph, a “substandard-width lane” is a lane that is too narrow for a moped and another vehicle to travel safely side by side within the lane.

(b) Any person operating a moped upon a one-way highway with two or more marked traffic lanes may ride as near the left-hand curb or edge of such roadway as practicable.

(3) A person propelling a moped solely by human power upon and along a sidewalk, or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk, has all the rights and duties applicable to a pedestrian under the same circumstances, except that such person shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian and shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing a pedestrian.

(4) No person shall propel a moped upon and along a sidewalk while the motor is operating.

(5) A violation of this section is a noncriminal traffic infraction, punishable as a moving violation as provided in chapter 318.

It is important to know that PIP or “no fault” insurance isn’t required for mopeds and motorcycles. PIP covers a great portion of medical bills related to an accident no matter who is at fault. Insurance isn’t required to register motorcycles, but if a motorcycle operator is found to be at fault in a crash with injuries, the owner and operator of the motorcycle is still financially responsible for bodily injuries and property damage to others. As when insuring any vehicle, I recommend that you carry as much uninsured motorist insurance (UM) as you can afford. UM will help cover medical expenses and lost wages if you’re involved in a crash with someone who chose not to carry insurance. And finally, even if you do not have PIP insurance when injured in a crash while riding a motorcycle, Florida law allows for a claim against the driver and owner of the motor vehicle deemed at fault.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a moped or motorcycle accident, contact Tampa personal injury attorney Paul Rebein at 813-305-7285.

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