Sharing the Road with Bicyclists on Bike to Work Day, and Every Day!
More and more frequently, people are opting to substitute their daily commutes from behind the wheel to behind the handlebars. The health, environmental and financial benefits to cycling are significant, however the road can be a very dangerous place when it’s not shared responsibly. It is imperative that both cyclists and drivers alike take necessary actions in order to keep themselves and each other safe.
Tips for sharing the road with bicyclists:
- Drive Cautiously. Reduce speed when encountering cyclists. Don't tailgate! Recognize hazards cyclists may face and give them space.
- Yield to Cyclists. Bicycles are considered vehicles. Cyclists should be given the appropriate right of way. Allow extra time for cyclists to traverse intersections.
- Be Considerate. Scan for cyclists in traffic and at intersections. Look for cyclists when opening car doors.
- Pass with Care. When passing, leave at least three feet between you and a cyclist. Wait for safe road and traffic conditions before you pass. Check over your shoulder before moving back.
- Watch for Children. Children on bicycles are often unpredictable. Expect the unexpected and slow down. Don't expect children to know traffic laws. Because of their size children can be harder to see.
Bicyclists also have responsibilities. Bicycles are considered vehicles, so bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as the other vehicles and are required to follow the same traffic laws on public roads.
Tips for bicyclists:
- The same laws that apply to motorists apply to cyclists. Obey all traffic control devices and use hand signals to indicate stops and turns.
- Always wear a properly fitting helmet. Wear a helmet, no matter how short the trip.
- Ride on the right. Always ride in the same direction as traffic. Use the furthest right lane that heads to your destination. Slower moving cyclists and motorists stay to the right.
- Ride Predictably. Ride in a straight line and don't swerve in the road or between parked cars. Check for traffic before entering street or intersection. Anticipate hazards and adjust your position accordingly.
- Be visible. Wear brightly colored clothing that provides contrast. Use a white front light in low light conditions and a red rear light in low light conditions. Use a reflector or reflective tape or clothing anytime. Announce yourself by making eye contact with motorists