OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — Some ride their bicycles for a commute and others for pleasure, but everyone must follow certain rules when on the road.
Should you ride on the road or on the sidewalk? And do you really need to stop at a red light?
Lieutenant Josh Sanders says if you are on a bike or in a car, you have to follow the same rules.
“If you ride on the road, you are subject to all of the motor vehicle laws that are out there.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
He says you still need to follow the traffic signals.
“Don’t run red lights, don’t run stop signs, don’t pass stopped traffic. Operate your bicycle as if you are a car in traffic.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
If you choose to ride your bike through a red light or stop sign and get hit by a car, you would be the one at fault.
“It would be the cyclist’s fault just like it would be the motor vehicle’s fault.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling PD
Some think you should ride against traffic so you have the ability see cars headed your way, but that is incorrect.
“You want to ride with traffic.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
And when riding, Sanders says you can either stay as far to the right as possible or take up the entire lane.
Either way, cars on the road need to give you the space to ride.
“You have to give them a three-foot wobble lane and treat them as if they could take the entire lane.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
Drivers needing to get around a cyclist must wait for the right moment.
“You as a motorist have to pass them when it is safe to do so. You have to wait until it is safe to pass that cyclist.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
And if none of this sounds legitimate and you choose not to follow the bike laws, could you get a ticket?
“You absolutely could. If we see you running a red light or riding on the sidewalk or not having the proper lighting fixtures at night, we may stop you and write you a citation.”Lt. Josh Sanders – Wheeling Police Department
So long story short, cyclists must follow the same rules as any car on the road would, or else you may get a ticket.