In this episode of Chat with the Chief, Police Chief Rick Gramza addresses bicycle safety.
Learn more about:
-A recent bicycle/vehicle collision
-Traffic rules for bicyclists
-Road or sidewalk?
Marshfield, WI (OnFocus) On April 24 at 5:24 p.m., a call came in for a bicycle and vehicle collision at the three-way intersection of 14th St. and Peach Avenue.
There were no serious injuries and no medical transports were taken at the scene.
As warm weather draws bicyclists out onto the roads in greater numbers, both motorists and passerby are advised to avoid distraction and be aware of their surroundings, particularly at intersections. Drivers need to obey stop signs, while bicyclists and pedestrians should allow drivers time to react to their presence.
“It’s still an individual bicyclist’s responsibility as well as a pedestrian’s to not move into a crosswalk suddenly. Traffic needs to be able to react safely, and traffic also has to yield to right of way,” said Lead Officer Steven Meek.
Because of safety concerns, entering too suddenly into an intersection could lead to a citation. “It’s not an exception but a rule that pedestrians and bicyclists are not supposed to move suddenly into traffic,” he said. “It’s something that could be avoided if the vehicle driver and the recreational vehicle both operate safely.”
While on the road, bicyclists obey traffic signs and signals. Bicyclists on the sidewalk, like pedestrians, should obey walk/don’t walk signals and be cautious before entering a crosswalk.
For added safety, wear clothing that stands out while riding and consider attaching a flashing light even in the daytime. “I ride a lot of miles and that helps draw attention to me no matter how I’m riding my bike,” said Lead Officer Meek.
Motorists and bicyclists share rights and responsibilities of the road. Drivers can help keep bicyclists safe by checking sidewalks before exiting a driveway, giving at least three feet of space when passing, not driving in bike lanes, and allowing bicyclists to merge into traffic where needed.
As always, bicyclists are encouraged to wear helmets.