SEATTLE — A Washington state appeals court has ruled cities must provide safe roadways for all traffic, including bicycles.
The three-judge panel found that cycling is a mode of “ordinary travel,” not just a sport, so cities must maintain roads for safe bicycle travel.
The ruling this week came in a lawsuit filed by Pamela O’Neill, who was seriously injured while commuting home from work in Port Orchard. She was thrown from her bicycle when she hit a patch of road that had gaps in the concrete.
O’Neill sued the city, claiming it was negligent in maintaining Sidney Avenue in a way that provided safe travel for bicycles. But a Superior Court judge granted the city’s motion to dismiss the case. The appeals court overturned that dismissal and sent the case back to the lower court “for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.”