CT Protects Pedestrians, Bicycle Riders, Skateboarders, People in Wheelchairs and Other Specific “Vulnerable” Individuals
Connecticut has a specific law that is meant to protect vulnerable users of Connecticut roadways including people riding bicycles. This law is to protect a classification of individuals who are deemed to be vulnerable in accidents that cause serious physical injury or death.
This law took effect on October 1, 2014, and provides added protection for people such as pedestrians, highway workers, bicycle riders, skateboarders, roller skaters, and in-line skaters, people in wheelchairs or motorized chairs, and a number of other specific types of individuals.
The Vulnerable User Law Can Be Found at CT General Statute Section 14-300i
Connecticut General Statutes Section 14 – 300i provides in relevant part:
Vehicle operator to exercise reasonable care when near vulnerable user on a public way.
(a) As used in subsection (b) of this section, (1) “vulnerable user” means: (A) A pedestrian; (B) a highway worker; (C) a person riding or driving an animal; (D) a person riding a bicycle; (E) a person using a skateboard, roller skates or in-line skates; (F) a person operating or riding on an agricultural tractor; (G) a person using a wheelchair or motorized chair; and (H) a blind person and such person’s service animal, and (2) “public way” includes any state or other public highway, road, street, avenue, alley, driveway, parkway or place, under the control of the state or any political subdivision of the state, dedicated, appropriated or opened to public travel or other use.
(b) Any person operating a motor vehicle on a public way who fails to exercise reasonable care and causes the serious physical injury or death of a vulnerable user of a public way, provided such vulnerable user has shown reasonable care in such user’s use of the public way, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars.
Drivers Have to be Especially Careful Around “Vulnerable” Individuals
Motor vehicle operators should be aware of the fact that they should be especially careful when operating a motor vehicle around anyone but especially those listed in Connecticut General Statute section 14-300i because they have been classified as vulnerable users on a public highway. If you are driving a motor vehicle around any of these types of individuals there is a need to be on high alert because of the fact that their ability to move out of the way in a timely fashion is somewhat reduced or limited which might result in a serious accident.
Serious Injuries Can Result From Violations of the Vulnerable User Statute
If you have been seriously injured, or if a friend or loved one has died, as a result of being involved in a motor vehicle accident as a result of a bicycle accident, pedestrian accident, skateboard accident, or other situation accident involving an individual who is vulnerable or limited in their ability to freely move about then it is important that you contact an experienced Connecticut personal injury lawyer at the earliest possible moment.
Your Case Might Require Expert Assistance or Investigative Services
There may be situations in which a private investigator will need to look into the specific facts of your case to determine whether or not there were security cameras in the area that might have recorded the accident or if there are witnesses that need to be interviewed to obtain information about the liability on the part of the offending party. These matters are sometimes time-sensitive and need to be looked into at the earliest possible moment before any video is erased or witnesses’ memories are reduced.
If you have been injured in this type of accident, please contact us.