STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI)- After this past weekends cycling death, cyclists around the area are being extra cautious when driving on the roadways.
Many motorists don’t know there are state laws in place to protect cyclists traveling on the streets.
When riding our bikes, we hear it all the time, ‘wear a helmet and watch for cars.’
But sometimes the cars aren’t always watching us.
“My husband over there, said he didn’t know for the first two weeks if I was even going to live,” says bike crash survivor Jan Morgan.
Jan Morgan is the owner of Boardtown Bikes in Starkville- she knows, first hand, the dangers of riding your bike on the roadways.
“A car hit me from behind, eye witnesses say it was probably going 70 miles per hour,” says Morgan.
Morgan was an avid cyclist who practiced all the proper laws. But 7 years ago, this month, she experienced every bicyclists worst nightmare.
“I don’t remember anything, but they say I flew up, and then hit the windshield and then fell off, well was unconscious since she pulled forward and stopped and at that point I fell off onto the ground, and then she ran over me again. Ran over my head and stopped with her tire on my head,” says Morgan.
And that was just the beginning-
“I was in a coma for five weeks, on a ventilator for five weeks, I had a trach- I don’t know if I still have the scar there, and then I was in rehab for four months,” says Morgan.
She’s not only scarred physically, but emotionally as well.
“Oh I don’t get back on the road, and I have a friend who was riding with me, does not ride anymore,” says Morgan.
Law enforcement say motorists need to share the roadway.
“In situations where there’s not a bicycle lane that bicycle has the same rights to the road as that vehicle does,” says Starkville Police Officer Brandon Lovelady.
The John Paul Frerer Bicycle Safety Act was put in place back in 2001 after a Tupelo teen was run over while riding his bike.
That law states, that even when there isn’t a bicycle lane, motorists still need to abide by the 3 foot law keeping from any cyclist on the road.
“Just respect cyclists because they actually have a right to be on the road, I know a lot of drivers feel differently, but the law says we have a right to be on the roadways,” says Morgan.
Morgan says she hopes her story can educate riders and not scare them.
“I hope that people will continue to cycle, yea what I had was horrible… but I’m one of the lucky ones, I recovered, I’m doing well.. Jay was just not,” says Morgan.
For more details on all bike laws pertaining to Mississippi you can visit this website here.