Motorists and Cyclists

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Important Rules for Sharing the Road with Cyclists

As the number of cyclists on the road increases the number of motor vehicles on the road is growing at an even faster pace. And with that the likelihood of a serious or even fatal bicycle accident involving a bicycle rider and an auto increases. Though Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, Mesa, Chandler and other Arizona towns are gradually increasing the number of surface street miles that contain designated bike lanes, there will never be enough bike lanes to completely safeguard cyclists from the hazards created by negligent motorists or the cyclists themselves.

Traffic Laws Apply to Motorists and Cyclists

As a general principle, if pedal-cycles are allowed to ride on the surface streets they must obey the same traffic and safety laws that apply to the motor vehicles they share the road with. A simple example of rules that apply to both cyclists and motorists is when a cyclist or motorist is riding on the street he must stop at stop signs and red traffic control signals, etc.

Bicycling and Sidewalk Rules

As a general rule - not including areas immediately surrounding Arizona State Universities - it is legal to ride bicycles on sidewalks - in either direction.

But if a cyclist is traveling in the street - either with or without painted bike lanes, the cyclist must ride in the same direction as motor vehicle traffic.

Cyclists need to practice caution whenever approaching “driveways,” particularly when approaching them from the right. This is due to the fact that motorists entering city streets from driveways rarely check for sidewalk traffic that comes from their right side because they are not anticipating it.

Bicycling and Cross-Walk Rules

Legally, bicyclists pedaling across crosswalks are treated as pedestrians. But cyclists still need to practice common sense and be mindful of any traffic control signs or signals.

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