Cycling on the road is an effective way to burn calories, but riders must remain mindful of all traffic laws and adhere to them just like drivers of motor vehicles do. Bicyclists must adhere to the same laws that govern motor vehicles when it comes to traffic laws.
As an example, it is illegal to speed through red lights – this poses serious threats to pedestrians and cyclists.
Accidents between bicycles and cars can be serious affairs, leading to injuries or even fatalities. To minimize their chances of this occurring, bikers should abide by all traffic laws and ride in an orderly fashion; staying a minimum distance away from parked cars in order to avoid sudden door opens that could strike without warning.
Bicyclists should avoid riding on sidewalks unless absolutely necessary; doing so annoys motorists and increases the chance of an accident, while sidewalks were designed for pedestrians – not fast moving bicycles!
Keep both hands on the handlebars at all times to enable fast responses in unexpected circumstances. Wearing a helmet may also be advantageous; however, this decision must ultimately be left up to each biker individually; some states enact specific laws mandating helmet use while other do not.
Cycling can be an enjoyable way to navigate around town or participate in serious road racing. No matter your level or type of cycling experience, having proper equipment for safety and comfort is essential – as is having a mini first aid kit just in case of emergencies!
Wear a helmet that has undergone safety inspection and bring plenty of water and snacks for energy boost. Use reflectors and lighting when riding at night.
Be sure to ride with traffic, adhering to all stop signs and red lights, using hand signals before changing lanes or turning. Also wear bright clothing and use a bell to signal yourself as present for other riders and drivers. Likewise when passing vehicles be wary not to come too close as this could result in accidents; be particularly wary when passing semis and buses.
Wherever bikes are considered vehicles, they must abide by traffic laws. Bicyclists should abide by traffic signals and stop at red lights before proceeding through an intersection; stay far to the right side of the road when possible and use bike lanes if available; avoid riding between cars, against traffic or impeding its flow of movement.
Drivers are more likely to collide into cyclists if they do not see them, making predictability and visibility key for cyclists. Wear bright clothing, reflectors and use bells or horns if needed for maximum effect.
As it can be more efficient to stay in the center of the traffic lane than taking advantage of left turn lanes, if possible take the center of each traffic lane as this will allow motorists to better perceive that you are cycling there and adjust lanes appropriately when passing you – this can be particularly risky when passing large vehicles or trucks.
Rules of the road
Traffic can be frightening on a bike; cars zip by at high speeds, pedestrians obliviously wander into your path, and roads often contain cracks and potholes – yet biking remains one of the best ways to navigate urban areas. Despite all of these hazards, cycling remains an incredible way of exploring your community.
Cyclists must use designated bike lanes; otherwise they can ride in regular traffic lanes if it is too narrow to share.
Cyclists should generally stick to the right-hand side of the road when cycling. Being visible to motorists and allowing them to see your hand signals can increase safety; always leave enough distance between parked cars (3 feet is usually recommended) so doors won’t open suddenly into your path.
Motorists tend to assume other traffic will pass them on their right, so it is essential that you signal your intentions clearly. Also keep in mind that motorcycles and scooters accelerate more rapidly than cars, meaning what may seem like an appropriate gap may suddenly become too close for safety.
Chris is a passionate learner and writer. When he’s not working on his blog or learning something new, he’s a full-time systems administrator and father of two beautiful girls. Chris loves spending time with his family, reading, writing, and playing hockey.