As a motorist, sharing the road with bicycles can be tricky. It is important to be aware of the laws and regulations to avoid accidents. Cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities about using the road as a motorist. Therefore, they should be treated as such. Cyclists are now more in number during the cooler months, so it is more important to be careful.
For motor vehicle drivers, it is to become distracted due to their phone, radio, or daydreaming. Some of them rarely look for anything else on the road other than another vehicle. Bicycles are also smaller and narrower, making them less visible. This is why following a few tips can help prevent hazards. Talk to an experienced lawyer if you have been in an accident.
Tips for car drivers to prevent injuring bicyclists
- Follow the three-foot rule.
Always keep a minimum distance of at least three feet from any bicyclist you see. This helps you avoid any side-view mirror collision or being pushed by the wind from a fast-moving vehicle. This strategy helps motorists to pass safely without worrying about getting into a crash. Additionally, it allows more time for the cyclists to look out for any debris or potholes.
- Adjust the attitude.
Many motorists think of bicyclists as an obstacle in their way, which is not the right approach. Bicyclists should be considered equal, not someone in their way. They are entitled to the road equally as a motorist. If you get impatient seeing a bicyclist, take a minute and think of them as a human on the bike. Picture them as one of your close friends or family members.
- Watch out at intersections.
Be very careful at the intersections as they are the most dangerous parts of a road. Allow bicyclists plenty of time to cross. If the other drivers see you crossing at the intersection, they will assume that there is a clear road. Do not blow horns near a cyclist. It may startle them and they may fall off their bike.
- Obey the speed limits.
Follow the speed limit, especially when driving in an area full of bicyclists. Overspeeding contributes to nearly thirty percent of roadway accidents in the United States. A motorist should immediately slow down his vehicle on spotting a bicyclist. Following the speed limit will give you more reaction time and decrease the likelihood of any collision.
- Beware the left turn.
There may be an incoming bicyclist while you are taking a left turn. In most cases, the driver assumes they have plenty of time to complete the turn. However, this is not always true. Always take caution and make the turn slowly.