You don’t have to take a test or get a license to ride your bike around town. With no license updates or fees, biking is a popular choice for short distance commutes and short errands. But another consequence of this is there’s no mandatory or uniform literature all cyclists are expected to know before they take to the road. Instead, cycling education as it exists is more of an elective undertaking. Nevertheless, there are rules that cyclists must follow in order to properly and efficiently share the road. Here are a few quick tips to guide cyclists to navigate Austin traffic:
When biking, follow all driving rules
All individuals using the road, including cyclists, pedicabs, automobiles, rickshaws, etc. are expected to follow driving laws. This necessitates an understanding of the basic rules that are often associated with driving, but are actually applicable to anyone on the road. This includes stopping at all stop lights and stop signs and using signals (see next section).
Use hand signals when turning and stopping
Signaling is an important part of communicating with other drivers and cyclists on the road. Cars are equipped with light signals that other drivers are familiar with. Cyclists need to use hand signals both when stopping and turning to let other drivers know their movements.
Ride as far to the right as safely possible
Slower cars are expected to use the right lanes on the road. Similarly, because bikes are typically slower than cars, they are expected to ride as far to the right as safely possible to ensure efficient flow of traffic. However, there are certain situations when cyclists either can’t or shouldn’t ride on the right side of the road.
At night, use bike lights and reflectors
When riding at night, cyclists are required by law to have a white light on the front of their bike and a red reflector or red light on the rear of their bike, just like cars must have working headlights and tail lights, to ensure that they can see the road in front of them and can be seen by other travelers on the road.
Always ride with the flow of traffic
Unless riding in a two-way protected bike lane, cyclists traveling on the road must always ride with the flow of traffic. If a road has a designated one-way bike lane, just like a one-way road, all travelers must be going in the same direction.
If you or someone you know has been seriously injured in a bicycle accident caused by someone else, it’s important to talk with a personal injury lawyer experienced with bicycle accidents. McMinn Law Firm’s accident attorneys are available by phone, live chat, or web form 24/7.