5 Tips for Sharing the Road

Five tips both drivers and cyclists should know: 

1. Both drivers and cyclists should know the laws and their responsibilities, and should abide by both. Visit the City’s Bicycling 101 page to learn about the rules of the road.  

2. It‘s okay to ride bikes on residential area sidewalks. However, in business districts it is against the law. When in a business district, bike riders must dismount and walk on sidewalks or ride in the street. When in the street, cyclists have all the rights and responsibilities of a car.

3. Reducing distractions and being aware of your surroundings improves safety. Watch to make sure that other cyclists or motorists are noticing your movements.

4. All traffic signals and stop signs must be followed. Disregard of signals and stop signs by bicyclists and motorists leads to crashes. Everyone can improve and prevent accidents.

5. You need to check both directions before pulling into traffic. Even if it’s a one-way street, looking both ways can prevent a crash.

Five tips drivers need to know:

1. Cyclists need to have the entire width of a lane when there’s not enough room for a vehicle and a bike to travel side-by-side.

2. Drivers need to be patient and must give cyclists a three-foot or more clearance when passing. 

3. Whenever making left or right turns, drivers should always be cautious. They should check for oncoming and rear-approaching cyclists, and give bikes the right-of-way when required.

4. All drivers should expect to see bicyclists on the sidewalk. When there are bikes on sidewalks, drivers should yield to them as they would pedestrians. When stopping at street corners, alleys and driveways, drivers should come to a halt before crosswalks.

5. Slowing down makes the streets safer. A cyclist’s chances of survival in a crash are greatly improved when the vehicles involved are traveling at a slower speed.

Five tips cyclists need to know:

1. Cyclists should ride just right of center in the lane that best serves their destination. Bike riding along curbs and in street gutters is dangerous because it makes it harder for drivers to spot them and increases the risk of riding into debris. Also, cyclists should not ride too close to parked cars to avoid colliding with an opening car door.

2. Bikes need to ride with the flow of traffic, unless a bike lane allows travel the opposite direction.

3. Cyclists should use caution when riding on residential sidewalks, particularly when crossing streets, alleys, and driveways. They’re considered pedestrians when not on the street, and should slow down and watch for traffic.

4. Stoplights and stop signs must be followed. Bikers should use hand signals to indicate turns and when switching lanes.

5. Helmets make for safer travel. Bikers should also use headlights, taillights and wear reflective light-colored clothing at night.

Last updated Sep. 27, 2011