It is important to become aware of how to share the road with bicycles. They may not be easily seen in traffic, and drivers must be alert and extra careful when approaching them. Keep these pointers in mind when driving near bicyclists:
- Bicycles are legally entitled to use the road and should be treated as vehicles.
- Drivers must yield to bicyclists as you would for pedestrians and other vehicles.
- Drivers must yield the right-of-way to a bicyclist when a bicycle path or bike lane intersects a road.
- When approaching or passing a bicyclist, slow down and allow as much space as possible.
- If you are about to make a right turn, do not pass a bicyclist immediately before the turn, slow down and let the cyclist clear the intersection before making your turn.
- When making turns, watch carefully for bicyclists entering your lane.
- Be especially careful if you see children riding bikes on the sidewalk. They may come onto the road.
- Check for bicyclists in your path before backing.
- Be especially cautious near schools or residential areas where bicyclists may be present.
- When parking your vehicle, check your mirrors before opening your door. Use your right hand to open the door, so you will automatically look over your left shoulder for oncoming cyclists and pedestrians.
Motorcycles have the same rights and responsibilities as other vehicles. Because of their size, they are also more difficult to see. Danger exists because the motorcyclist is exposed and has no protection should a collision occur.
- Do not share a lane with a motorcycle. They have the right to use a complete traffic lane, and they need space to react to other traffic and road conditions.
- Always make a visual check for motorcycles by checking mirrors and blind spots, by turning your head and looking before entering or leaving a lane of traffic, and at intersections.
- Before turning left, be alert for motorcycles by looking carefully to the front and sides of your vehicle.
- When following a motorcyclist, allow at least a 4 second following distance or more in wet conditions. Motorcycles can stop quickly and may have to suddenly to avoid obstacles.
Here’s a downloadable PDF file that explains more on safety for motorcycles from the NHTSA: https://icsw.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/pedbimot/motorcycle/ShareTheRoad/images/ShareTheRoadwithMotorcycles.pdf