For many, bicycling is a healthy, clean, economical, and fun transportation alternative. Bicycling enhances your physical health, mental outlook and overall quality of life.
Since bicycles share the road with motorists and other users of the road system, bikers face a number of hazards. In order to ensure your safety as a bicyclist, please review and practice the safety tips outlined here. They may just save your life!
To stay safe when you bike, ride defensively and expect the unexpected. A properly fitted helmet should be worn at all times.
- Smart Cycling Videos: The League of American Bicyclists
- Bicycle Safety Public Service Announcement: N.D. Department of Transportation
Bicycle Safety Tips
Obey The Rules of the Road
Bicyclists are considered vehicle operators; they are required to obey the same rules of the road as other vehicle operators, including obeying traffic signs, signals, and lane markings. View local ordinances for your community.
Ride with traffic
Always ride on the right side of the road. Do not pass motorists on the right side. If you approach an intersection with a right turning lane and intend to continue straight, do not enter the right turn lane. Ride with the through traffic when not in a designated bike lane. When riding with others, ride single file except while passing another cyclist.
Avoid riding in lanes that position you on the right side of a right turning motorist. Move out of the right turn lane if you are not turning right. Ride in the rightmost lane that goes in the direction that you are traveling.
Make left turns from the left lane. Prepare to move into the left lane by first checking over your shoulder, yielding, signaling and merging across the traffic lane when safe.
Watch for a Shared Road Sign or Marking
A shared road marking is a stencil applied to roadway lanes when there is not enough space for a bicyclist to safely share a lane with a motorist due to the width of the roadway lane.
The shared lane marking shows bicyclists the most appropriate place to travel in the roadway lane so as not to encourage motorists to “squeeze by” when a travel lane is narrow. Sometimes shared lane markings will guide a bicyclist to the center of a travel lane.
Riding on Sidewalks
Go slowly on pathways/sidewalks. Yield to pedestrians. Provide an audible warning as you prepare to pass, such as "on your left". Biking is not allowed on sidewalks in downtown Bismarck.