Being a good driver means sharing the road. Unfortunately for bicyclists, over 100,000 are injured in a crash every year. Let’s be a part of the solution- bicyclists are incredibly vulnerable on the roads. It’s time for a bicycle safety refresher course!
Bicyclists Will Be On the Road
With 1% of all commuters being on a bicycle, you’re going to see one on the road regularly. Motorists are responsible for sharing the road with bicycles, and one has as much right to the road as the other. Here’s a few tips to remember:
- Look twice for a cyclist before turning left or right onto a road.
- Check before opening your car door when you park on the street – you don’t want to open it into a cyclist’s path!
What Are the Rules, Anyway?
Bicycle safety is something new drivers learn at Driver’s Ed, but any continuing education is non-existent. Do you remember any of these rules?
- In Ohio, if you plan on passing a bicycle, you must give 3 feet of distance between you and the bicyclist.
- If you must drive single file with a bicyclist in front of you, leave 3 feet of distance as well.
- The bike lane is not for vehicles. Don’t drive in the bike lane. Hopefully this is an easy one!
Some Guidelines to Live By
When in doubt, it’s a good idea to keep these best practices in mind. They may not be hard-written laws, but this list can save lives and make your commute a bit easier:
- Children riding bicycles are often times allowed to ride on the sidewalk from age 10 and under. They are less aware of their surroundings, so be careful and considerate – especially at intersections.
- A best practice is to give the right of way to a bicyclist if you have any confusion. Giving them a safe path travel is the considerate thing to do for a bicyclist at any age.
- Not all bicyclists are proficient, and anything can happen with the bike equipment or road conditions. Potholes, debris, and other obstacles could effect a bicyclist’s journey. Have patience, but also don’t assume they will always travel in a straight path.
A bicycle safety refresher course is a great reminder at any time of year, especially spring and summer. It will keep any bicycle-related claim off your record, and better yet, keeps everyone safe on the road.