Whether you ride your bicycle occasionally or every day, you might not know about the extent of the traffic regulations you must follow. Biking in the Bay Area can be a challenge. Not only do you have to worry about pedestrians and other cyclists, but you also have to navigate through a lot of traffic.
Whether you are going on a weekend ride or a daily commute, it is important to follow California bicycle laws to keep everyone safe – including yourself. Here are three important laws you should keep in mind as a Bay Area bicyclist.
1. Yield to pedestrians
If you are on your bike, you must stop for anyone crossing the street by foot, just as you would do if you were driving a car. This can seem inconvenient at times, but it is an important law to follow. You can always get off your bike and walk your bike across the street to become a pedestrian.
2. You do not have to ride in bike lanes
While the law generally instructs you to use bike lanes or stay to the right of the road when possible, you may ride elsewhere if it is a safer option. For example, if you are making a left turn, you might be safer riding to the left part of the lane. You can also move to the middle of a lane to avoid hazards.
3. Stop at traffic lights and stop signs
As frustrating as it can be to stop once you pump up to a good speed, you cannot soar through an intersection with a stop sign or red light. This law is not in place to inconvenience you, though. Cycling through this kind of intersection could result in an accident.
Finding your way through the Bay Area streets as a bicyclist can be a struggle, but you can do it safely if you follow all the traffic laws.