How to Drive Alongside Cyclists

We see them every day on the road, we have even seen them squeezing through traffic and driving between cars. Maybe you have had to drive slowly and frustrated behind a cyclist. However, even in the biggest cities in the world you can see the importance of cycling as a method of transport. Even above that, there are established laws regarding how to drive with cyclists. Let's look at the four best practices for creating a road that is safe for cyclists.

Respect the Bike Lane

These days, there are about 400 bike lanes in the United States. Many criticize the fact that so many bike lanes exist because they believe they only cause traffic and that they are just a cultural tactic to please those who ride bikes. Whatever the reason, you have to respect the space on the road assigned for cyclists. This means that you cannot park your car in bike lanes, and the law establishes rules about how to drive with bikers on the road. For example, in the majority of state laws in the United States, if you want to pass a cyclist, you can only do so if there is a minimum of three feet of space so that you don’t endanger the cyclist. Most people call this the “three foot rule.”

Stay Alert at Night

Driving alongside cyclists at night can be very difficult and dangerous. Cyclists usually prepare themselves well for night-time rides. They use bright colored clothes as well as add lights and reflectors to their bikes. But what if they don’t? We need to know what to do when we drive alongside cyclists with little experience or when they simply ignore the necessary precautions. In this case it’s even more important to take the initiative as the driver to make sure there is not a cyclists in the lane before turning. When there is a cyclist incoming in the lane when turning, it is your responsibility to slow down and yield to them.

Don’t Use your Phone While Driving

Everyday, approximately 660,000 drivers use their phones while driving. Statistics like this are alarming for people like cyclists. If someone cannot even pay attention to the road in front of him or her, how would they be able to drive safely alongside cyclists? It may be difficult to drive undistracted, but practicing attentive driving saves lives.

Understand That They Have Rights

On top of having rights on the road, cyclists also have legal rights, which could endanger drivers who do not follow certain laws. You also have to take into account that, if you are responsible in an accident with a cyclist, you will pay a large cost. Some punishments include losing your license, losing your car insurance and even receiving criminal charges.

Make sure to protect yourself and your family when you share the road with cyclists. Call an Infinity agent at 1-800-INFINITY or get a quote online today.

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