Nicer Weather Means More Cyclists, Know the Rules of the Road.
As the weather gets nicer, more cyclists will be on the roads. Bicycles are considered vehicles, and bicyclists are drivers carrying the same responsibilities as drivers of motor vehicles.
In a recent Facebook post, The Richland Police Department shares a few guidelines for bicyclists.
Get our free mobile app
Probably the most important rule is to ride on the right side...going in the same direction as traffic flow. Do not go against traffic.
Obey All Traffic Laws. A bicycle is a vehicle and you’re the driver. When you ride in the street, obey all traffic signs, signals, and lane markings.Yield to Traffic. Almost always, drivers on a smaller road must yield (wait) for traffic on a major or larger road. If there is no stop sign or traffic signal and you are coming from a smaller roadway (out of a driveway, from a sidewalk, a bike path, etc.), you must slow down and look to see if the way is clear before proceeding. Yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk.Be Predictable. Ride in a straight line, not in and out of cars. Signal your moves to others.Stay Alert at All Times. Use your eyes and ears. Watch out for potholes, cracks, wet leaves, storm grates, railroad tracks, or anything that could make you lose control of your bike. Listen for traffic and avoid dangerous situations; don’t use personal electronics when you ride.Look Before Turning. When turning left or right, always look behind you for a break in traffic, and then signal before making the turn. Watch for left- or right-turning traffic.Watch for Parked Cars. Ride far enough out from the curb to avoid the unexpected from parked cars (like doors opening, or cars pulling out).
While it's not required by Washington law, it is good to wear a helmet for safety. If you're cycling at night, make sure others can see you. Wear reflective clothing. You may want to invest in some lighting for your bicycle.