Sharing the Road: Bike Safety Tips for Cyclists and Drivers

As summer gets closer (we think), cyclists and motorists will be sharing the road more often.
Review some tips and local laws around sharing the road.

Tips for drivers:

  • When passing, leave four feet between you and a cyclist. Make sure road and traffic conditions are safe before making the pass. Check over your shoulder before moving back;
  • Cyclists should always be given the right of way when it is theirs. A bicycle is not as fast as a car, so allow them more time to get through an intersection;
  • Children are often unpredictable, which can be dangerous when riding a bike. Always slow down in an area where children may be riding bikes;
  • Be mindful of cyclists on the road with you. Do not beep your horn at a cyclist when you’re very close to them. Look for cyclists when opening doors.

Tips for bicyclists:

  • Wear bright clothing; in low light conditions use a white front light and a red rear light; use a reflector or reflective tape or clothing anytime;
  • The same laws that apply to motorists apply to cyclists. Obey all lights and signs, and use hand signals to indicate stops and turns;
  • Always ride in the same direction as traffic. Use the furthest right lane that heads to your destination. Slower moving cyclists and motorists stay to the right;
  • Ride in a straight line and don’t swerve in the road or between parked cars. Check for traffic before entering any street or intersection;
  • Whether you’re going across the street or taking a mile-long ride, always wear a helmet.

Sharing the Road and NL

Some bike law highlights in Newfoundland and Labrador:

  • Bicycle helmet use is now mandatory for all cyclists (adults, youth and children) in Newfoundland and Labrador. Read all the regulations about bicycle helmets in NL here.
  • Cyclists are not permitted on the sidewalk.
  • When riding between one-half hour before sunset and one-half hour after sunrise you are required to have a front white light, and a rear red light or rear red reflector on your bike.