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Bike & Pedestrian Safety

To be safe and avoid accidents, bicyclists should ride with traffic and be aware of hazards, cars, and people around them. The Bicycle and Pedestrian Program (link is external) from the Arizona Department of Transportation created a few safety tips to help you bike smart and bike safely in Arizona:​

Information for Cyclists

  • Ride on the right-hand side of the road 

  • Always ride with the flow of traffic. Riding against traffic is very dangerous.

  • Ride predictably

  • Follow the same rules motorists do; travel in a straight line without swerving into other traffic lanes.

  • Obey traffic control devices (signs, signals, lane markings)

  • Bicyclists must follow the rules of the road, just like other vehicles. 

  • Protect your head - always wear a helmet, even on short trips.

  • Follow lane markings

  • Don't turn left from the right lane; don't ride straight in a lane marked "Right-Turn Only".

  • Ride correctly through intersections

  • Use the right-most lane that goes in your direction. If you're heading straight, get in the through lane, not to the right of a turning vehicle. 

  • Signal before you move or stop - hand signals let drivers and others know what you intend to do next. 

  • Enter streets and intersections cautiously 

  • Always check for oncoming traffic.

  • Ride defensively on the road

  • Anticipate hazards and be ready to adjust your position in traffic.

  • Don't ride on the sidewalk - bicycles (except postal and police bicycles) are not legal on sidewalks in many cities.

  • Be visible and be seen - wear bright colors to increase your visibility and make eye contact with drivers.

  • Look behind you. Know how to look over your shoulder without swerving or losing your balance; use side-view mirrors as an option. 

  • Make sure everything on your bicycle is in proper working condition before you ride. 

Information for Motorists

Driving alongside bicycles sometimes requires extra safety precautions taken for motorists. The Bicycle and Pedestrian Program from the Arizona Department of Transportation has a few tips to help motorists adjust their behavior when accompanied by bicyclers while traveling. 

 

  • Drive cautiously. Give cyclists a break and slow down when they are sharing the road with you.

  • Recognize a potentially dangerous situation for a bicyclist and give them extra space.

  • Yield to cyclists. Cyclists may need the entire lane if there is a hazard in their lane of travel.

  • Drivers should give cyclists time to cross intersections. 

  • Be considerate

  • Pass with care. Don't honk your horn when passing a cyclist.

  • When parked on the street, watch for cyclists before opening your door.

  • Give a cyclist plenty of space when passing (at least three feet).

  • Look over your shoulder after passing a cyclist to make sure they're clear before moving back into position.

  • Watch for children. Children on bikes can be unpredictable, make sure to slow down. Don't expect kids to know and follow traffic laws.

Information for Pedestrians

  • A pedestrian crossing a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles on the roadway.

  • A pedestrian crossing a roadway at a point where a pedestrian tunnel or overhead pedestrian crossing has been provided shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles on the roadway.

  • Between adjacent intersections at which traffic control signals are in operation, pedestrians shall not cross at any place except in a marked crosswalk.

  • Pedestrians shall move expeditiously, when practicable, on the right half of crosswalks.

  • If sidewalks are provided, a pedestrian shall not walk along and on an adjacent roadway.

  • If sidewalks are not provided, a pedestrian walking along and on a highway shall walk when practicable only on the left side of the roadway or its shoulder facing traffic that may approach from the opposite direction.

  • A person shall not stand in a roadway for the purpose of soliciting a ride from the driver of a vehicle.

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