Bike Month 2013
Bike to the Right - Go with the Flow
May is National Bike Month and the local focus this year is on safety. Understanding and using safety rules for cyclists and drivers will reduce the chance of accidents and injury. Bike to the right, go with the flow of traffic. Be visible, be courteous, be careful. There are many events during Bike Month where cyclists can practice road riding skills and enjoy our region’s bike facilities. See the events list here.
Contrary to what many new cyclists think, biker riders are much safer when riding in the street in the flow of traffic rather than riding on the sidewalk or ducking in and out of traffic. If a driver sees you and understands what you intend to do, you increase your safety. A person riding on the sidewalk is more likely to be hit by a car turning into or out of driveways. A cyclist who ducks in and out of a line of parked cars will surprise drivers and also risk getting “doored.”
Cyclists are required, like motorists, to ride to the right but are not required to crowd the curb or get too close to parked cars. Drivers can pass cyclists when there is adequate room to pass safely. It is perfectly legal - and safer - for a cyclist to command a full lane if there is not room for a car to pass safely. Cyclists must also indicate turns with hand and arm signals, and obey traffic signals.
When riding at dusk or dark, cyclists are required to have a white light on the front of their bikes and red light or reflector on the rear. Area bicycling clubs and biking advocates can provide training and advice for new riders or people planning to use a bike for commuting. See WeAreTraffic.org for links and assistance. Download and print a booklet on biking in Ohio at the ODOT website here.
Bike Month Events
Bike to school and bike to work. Ride with a ranger, try a bike safety challenge, and learn about area bike paths and the roads connecting them. Ride TARTA for a quarter when you ride your bike to the bus. Check out all the events here.