Bicyclist Safety

When riding a bicycle in Kenmore it's important that you be aware of your surroundings. Don't trust that vehicles will stop for you, or that they will see you before they turn out of the driveway. While you can legally share the roadway with vehicles, be courteous and signal when turning, stop at intersections and stop signs, and make an effort to be seen by wearing brightly colored or reflective clothing, especially at night.

 

Be Aware & Be Alert!
  • Under Washington law, bicyclists are considered "vehicles" and may use the entire lane if they are traveling at a similar speed as vehicle traffic. If you are going slower than the normal flow of traffic, move to the far right side of the lane. You may choose to ride on the trail, sidewalk, bike lane, shoulder or travel lane as suits your safety needs, but always yield to pedestrians.
  • Do not count on drivers to signal! Drivers may turn onto driveways and side streets at any time without signaling and may not see you.
  • Scan for traffic, signal your intentions, and occupy the center of the lane when turning.
  • Do not pass vehicles during a red light to get ahead of them, as you will be in a driver's blind spot, which is especially dangerous if they are turning.

 

Please be safe and seen!
  • Be seen! Wear light colored and reflective clothing so you are more visible.
  • Always look before you change lanes. Just because you do not hear a vehicle approaching doesn't mean there isn't one!

 

Be courteous!
  • Follow traffic laws: Stop at intersections, and signal your intended directions. Thank drivers who let you by.
  • Yield to pedestrians and alert them via bell or voice when passing. Give pedestrians 3 feet of space when passing.

 

Use the required bicycle equipment!
  • In the state of WA, during the hours of darkness, a white front light (not a reflector) that is visible for 500 feet and a red reflector on the rear are required. In addition to a red rear reflector, most people use a red light as well.

 

Are cyclists required to wear helmets?
  • YES! In King County, people of all ages are required to wear helmets! Failing to wear a helmet may result in a $30 fine.
  • If you are under the age of 18, your parent/guardian is responsible for you to wear a helmet.

 

The City of Kenmore also offers low-cost helmet. Stop by during business hours. Suggested donations are $6.00 for toddler sizes, $7.00 for children and adult sizes, and $10.00 for the multi-sport style. Use Cascade Bicycle Club's helmet fitting guides to make sure your helmet is fitted properly, and see other low-cost providers of helmets in the area.

 

Tips for Kids
  • Riding a bicycle to school can also be enjoyable for your child, but involves a little more skill than walking. Make sure your children have strong riding skills before allowing them to ride to school.  Make sure they practice starting and stopping, riding in a straight line, looking over their shoulders, and signaling to vehicles.
  • Kids need to use their eyes and ears to stay alert, so they should never use headphones or cell phones while riding.
  • Your child should ride on a sidewalk when one is available, or ride in the same direction of traffic if there is no sidewalk.

 

Remember The ABCs:

Always make sure your bicycle is ready to safely ride. Before every ride, check the:

  • Air in their tires (might need to fix a flat, or simply pump the tires)
  • Brakes (make sure they are working)
  • Chain   (must be tight on single-gear bicycles)

 

Useful links for bicyclists:

Washington State Bicyclist Laws

Cascade Bicycle Club

Last updated: Sun, 02/08/2015 - 3:02pm