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Bicycle Cases Summarized By Personal Injury Attorney

This page within Virginia Tort Case Law is a compilation of cases reported by the Virginia Supreme Court and summarized by Brien Roche dealing with the topic of bicycle operation and the related topic of vehicle accidents.  For more information about bicycle issues see the page on Wikipedia.


See Va. Code § 29.1-509 as to duty of care and liability for damages of landowners to bike riders, etc.

See Va. Code § 46.2-100 for definition.

See Va. Code § 46.2-800 stating that bicyclists have same rights and duties as driver of any vehicle unless context of provisions clearly indicates otherwise.

See Va. Code § 46.2-906 as to carrying packages on bike.

See Va. Code § 46.2-907 as to passing on bicycle.

See Va. Code §§ 46.2-903 and 46.2-904 as to riding bike on sidewalk and see Va. Code § 46.2-905 as to riding on roadways and bicycle paths.

See Va. Code § 46.2-1015 as to lights required.


2010 Rascher v. Friend, 279 Va. 370, 689 S.E.2d 661.

Plaintiff was riding a bicycle on a residential two-lane road. As plaintiff approached intersection, oncoming vehicle made left turn in front of him. After collision, defendant admitted fault and prepaid statutory fine for failing to yield right of way. Trial court improperly struck plaintiff’s evidence on the grounds of contributory negli- gence. The jury reasonably could have concluded that the plaintiff was not negligent or, in the alternative, that any such negligence was not a proximate cause of the collision.

2004 Russ v. Destival, 267 Va. 458, 593 S.E.2d 201.

Bicycle accident. Court improperly instructed the jury by changing the wording of the statute and adding the word “close” so as to state that the bicyclist had to refrain from entering or crossing an intersection in disregard of close or approaching traffic. This is an incorrect statement of the law since the statute does not contain the word “close.”

1995 Mann v. Hinton, 249 Va. 555, 457 S.E.2d 22.

Defendant in passing plaintiff on bicycle had duty to proceed at safe distance and at reasonable speed. Plaintiff’s theory of how accident occurred was that defendant either passed so close to plaintiff as to cause him to fall off bicycle or in passing actually struck plaintiff. These theories were not inconsistent.

1988 Karim v. Grover, 235 Va. 550, 369 S.E.2d 185.

Plaintiff on bike, struck by left-turning vehicle at intersection. Plaintiff did not have lamp on front of bike.

1986 Endicott v. Rich, 232 Va. 150, 348 S.E.2d 275.

Motorist approaches two boys on bikes from rear. Jury issue as to negligence motorist presented: whether motorist increased her vigilance as approaching boys, whether motorist observed that boys were unaware of her presence, and whether motorist had vehicle under proper control.

1971 Claypoole v. King, 212 Va. 132, 183 S.E.2d 167.

Plaintiff on bicycle collided with defendant’s vehicle; both traveling in same direction.

1970 Phillips v. Schools, 211 Va. 19, 175 S.E.2d 279.

Statute referring to person riding bicycle refers to person controlling operation not to passenger. Statute prohibiting passenger riding on motorcycle, unless it is designed to carry passenger, not applicable to passenger on bicycle. Passenger injured; judgment for defendant reversed and remanded for new trial.

1970 Lumpkin v. Doe, 210 Va. 571, 172 S.E.2d 790.

Plaintiff operating bicycle on shoulder of road and struck by phantom vehicle. Plaintiff had no recollection of accident. Physical facts suggest that accident occurred by defendant driving off roadway onto shoulder.

1969 Bohon v. Manning, 210 Va. 173, 169 S.E.2d 452.

Bicycle struck while in intersection. Defendant said he never saw bike until time of impact. Jury question presented.

1963 Grant v. Mays, 204 Va. 41, 129 S.E.2d 10.

Child on bike struck by automobile.

1959 Jones v. Aluminum Window & Door Corp., 201 Va. 283, 110 S.E.2d 531.

There is no statute which forbids bike rider from traveling along right side of highway. Collision between truck and bicyclist. Bicyclist on shoulder of road. Jury instructed that child under age of 14 operating bike along highway is, itself, warning of danger.

1959 Portsmouth Transit Co. v. Brickhouse, 200 Va. 844, 108 S.E.2d 385.

Jury question was presented where child on bicycle was struck by bus. At time of impact, child was riding between two parked cars about three car lengths apart and defendant’s vehicle was traveling in same direction as child.

1953 Laubach v. Howell, 194 Va. 670, 74 S.E.2d 794.

Bicyclist has right to operate on shoulder of road or paved surface just as does motor vehicle. Motor vehicle operator has right to pass bicyclist provided he does so two feet to his left.

1949 Kinser v. Haga, 189 Va. 963, 54 S.E.2d 886.

Plaintiff struck by taxicab while riding his bicycle. No duty to look for unusual movement of taxicab that rapidly and unlawfully crosses street diagonally. Plaintiff not guilty of contributory negligence.

1945 Piccolo v. Woodford, 184 Va. 432, 35 S.E.2d 393.

Vehicle struck child on bike. Defendant had ample opportunity to see, yet failed to see.

1945 Cooke v. Griggs, 183 Va. 851, 33 S.E.2d 764.

Plaintiff riding bicycle on roadway was struck by motor vehicle. Verdict for plaintiff affirmed.

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Bicycle Cases Summarized By Personal Injury Attorney

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