Watch for bicyclists on the road
by Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT)
June 15, 2008
Warmer temperatures and skyrocketing gas prices mean Wyoming drivers are likely to see increasing numbers of bicyclists on the road with them in the coming months, so itfs important to look for smaller vehicles and safely share the road with them.
Under Wyoming law, bicyclists have the same rights on the road as any other vehicle, but they are required to ride gas near to the right side of the roadway as practicable.h Drivers must recognize that what is practicable on any specific section of road can depend on pavement conditions and whether there is loose gravel, broken glass or other debris along the right side of the pavement. Bicyclists are allowed to take the entire lane when hazards, road width or traffic speed require it.
Cyclists must do their part by obeying all traffic laws, including riding with the flow of other traffic. Here are some helpful strategies for sharing the road, whether you are biking or driving.
- Keep yourself visible. Make sure drivers are aware of your presence on the road. Wear brightly colored clothing for daytime rides, and white or reflective clothing at night. Use a white light on the front of your bike and a red flashing light on the back at night. Always signal your intentions before you turn, then keep both hands on your handlebars as you make the turn.
- Make sure your movements are predictable. Obey traffic laws and the rules of the road. Always ride in a straight line and be predictable. Don't dart in and out of traffic, or make sudden stops or turns. Signal if you need to move out into the road to avoid a pothole or debris. Anticipate road hazards and adjust your riding position in traffic accordingly to avoid swerving.
- Negotiate with other vehicles. Work with other vehicles, not against them. Make eye contact with drivers to be sure they see you and know your intentions. Ride on the right side of the road, with the flow of traffic, not against it. If you're riding slowly, wave a faster-moving vehicle around you. Even though you have the right of way, you may want to let a motorist turn or go before you at times. They will appreciate it, and it can help improve attitudes towards cyclists.
- Leave space for bicyclists. Always leave at least five feet between your vehicle and a cyclist when passing. Pass with care, waiting until road and traffic conditions allow you to safely pass. Look over your shoulder after passing a cyclist before moving back to a normal lane position.
- Drive cautiously. Reduce your speed when encountering cyclists. Recognize situations that may be potentially dangerous to cyclists and give them plenty of room. In rain or inclement weather, give cyclists extra trailing and passing room.
- Be considerate. Look for bicyclists before opening doors after parking. Do not sound your horn when passing or in close proximity to bicyclists.
- Watch for children. Children on bicycles are harder to see, have less experience with traffic laws and are unpredictable. Expect the unexpected, slow down and give them plenty of room.
For more information, contact the WYDOT Planning Office at 307-777-4412.