You Don't Follow Bicycle Rules

My last post on Pedestrians stated that you walk facing traffic.  This seems to make sense to me as you can see oncoming traffic.  The direction of travel for bicycles is just the opposite.  You travel in the same direction as the cars, i.e., the cars are coming from behind you.  Where there is a sidewalk pedestrians use it no matter what the direction of traffic.  I presume then that if there is a dedicated bicycle lane the same would be true. (Check your state law).  Bicyclist must also follow all the Motor Vehicle Laws, pertaining to highway usage, that cars do.  Signaling when making a turn, stopping at red lights and stop signs, etc.  The problem is most parents don't teach their 10-12 year old bicycle riders the rules.  After all, it's just a bicycle.  He's just a kid.  If he gets run over, well he'll know better the next time.  (Only kidding, most parents don't say or think that).  But I would venture to say that they do think, "it's just a bike," or "he's just a kid."

At least we should teach the younger bike riders some basic rules and safety procedures -  like walking the bike across busy intersections.  Now that he's a pedestrian he should follow the walk/don't walk signs.
A good place to teach the rules is while he's in the car.  "I stopped at the stop sign and you should also when on your bike."  "I put on my turn signal as I'm turning to advise the other drivers of my intentions - you should make a signal also before you make a turn on your bike for the same reasons."  Ask, "do you know the hand signals?"  If not, tell him you'll teach him when you get home.  Don't teach while driving.  Keep your focus on your driving, not teaching, there may be  a kid on a bike just ahead - especially at night.  Teaching safety is never a waste of time.  Better yet, pick up a bicycle safety handbook or download one from online and go over it with your "bike rider".  Stay Safe.


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