(Cheyenne, Wyo.) - Following the recent fatal crash in Cheyenne
, Wyoming Pathways
wants to help us remind riders to keep in mind
the importance of bicycle safety.
As summer weather finally arrives in Wyoming, many of us are beginning to
get out on city streets and enjoy Wyoming's beautiful rural roads. Proper
preparation and following the below list of simple rules of the road can
help you enjoy a much safer ride, and may even save your life.
*RULES OF THE ROAD: **(h/t: League of American Bicyclists
*Prepare: *As you prepare to venture out on your bicycle, take a moment to
ensure that your transport is in good mechanical order and ready to go.
• Check tires for sufficient air.
• Make sure your brakes are properly working and that the chain is smoothly
running to eliminate surprises once you embark.
• Be sure your wheel levers are closed and wheels are firmly attached.
• Carry and periodically inspect your emergency supplies, such as a spare
tube, basic tools and a patch kit, and first aid items for longer tours.
• Wear a helmet along with sun glasses and comfortable clothing for cycling.
• Plan your route. When possible, use pathways and lower traffic roads or
roads with bike lanes.
*Ride: *Follow traffic laws. Bicycles are considered vehicles that must
follow the same laws as motor vehicles. This means properly signaling for
turns and obeying all traffic signals and signs. Sidewalks and crosswalks
are for pedestrians, not bikes.
*Ride with traffic.* Ride as far to the right as practicable. Motor
vehicles are required to give you a three-foot minimum safe distance when
passing. They must give you the right of way when they are crossing in from
of you, or pulling out of a side street. However, even if you have the
right, it is unwise to challenge a vehicle weighing thousands of pounds
more than you.
*Be predictable to be safe.* Maintain a steady, straight line while riding.
Check behind you before turning or changing lanes. If you are riding along
a road with a right-turn lane when you want to go straight, carefully move
left of the turning lane before the intersection. Scan behind and ahead in
*Be conspicuous. *Be as visible as possible, riding where drivers can see
you. Wear bright clothing. Use lights at night or during poor visibility.
Make eye contact with drivers.
*Think ahead.* Anticipate what drivers, pedestrians and other bicyclists
will do next. Always watch for turning vehicles and avoid riding too close
to parked vehicles to avoid hitting an opening door. Yield to pedestrians
and alert them to your approach by calling to them or ringing a bell. Keep
alert for any debris, potholes or railroad tracks that may be in your path.
*Keep your cool.* Sometimes drivers won’t see you and inadvertently cut you
off or drive too close. Road rage will solve nothing and most drivers don’t
appreciate a lecture. Let it go.
Ongoing development of urban pathways is creating safer options for
cyclists with local roads now including bike lanes and highways with wider
shoulders, but knowing the above rules are key to a successful ride.
Wyoming's legislature has also been working to pass more cycling-friendly
laws such as the three-foot safe passing law
a new law that creates a Wyoming Bicycle and Pedestrian System Task Force.
This shows an
increased awareness by government of the importance of cycling as both a
recreational activity and as an alternative mode of travel, and of the
necessity of improving bicycle and pedestrian safety on Wyoming roads.
Wyoming Pathways continues to support safety
progress in the state and works to bring an improved holistic environment
for people-powered movement that includes complimentary infrastructure,
education and legislation.
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