CYCLISTS, remember to:
Wear a helmet.
Helmets are required by law in the State of North Carolina for anyone 16 years and under. This includes cyclists and passengers on a bike. Children under 16 riding/cycling without a helmet can result in a fine for the parents.
Since helmets can help reduce serious injuries, adults are also encouraged to wear a helmet
Obey traffic laws
. Cyclists are considered vehicles in North Carolina and must heed all traffic laws when on public roads.
Walk your bike through crosswalks.
Pedestrians have the right-of-way on sidewalks, crosswalks, and greenways.
When available, use bike lanes
. Use caution in areas where on-street parking is adjacent to the bike lane.
Use hand signals.
Let others know your next move by using the
universal hand signals
for left turns, right turns, and stopping.
Do not ride distracted
. Don’t let your phone distract you; give your full attention to the road.
Wear light, bright colors and reflective materials, so drivers see you. Cyclists must also have working headlights and taillights when riding at night.
DRIVERS, remember to:
. Slower speed limits usually mean the area is frequented by pedestrians and cyclists. Be on the lookout and drive safely.
Do not drive distracted.
Don’t let your phone distract you; give your full attention to the road. It can wait!
Look for bike lanes.
Be on extra alert when you see bike lanes or crosswalks. Make sure bike lanes are clear when turning left or right. Beware of approaching vehicles, as they can block your view of a cyclist in the oncoming bike lane.
Know the law.
There are laws in place to keep cyclists safe:
- Drivers may cross the double-yellow lines to pass a cyclist when the oncoming lane is clear. This gives the cyclist room for error should they fall or encounter road debris.
- While cyclists are encouraged to use bike lanes, they can legally use the full lane, even when bike lanes are available. A cyclist may opt to use the full lane for greater visibility or to avoid vehicles blocking the bike lane or debris.
- NC State law requires that drivers give cyclists a minimum of three feet clearance space, although five feet is encouraged. This provides the cyclist with room for error should they fall or encounter road debris.
- Cyclists may ride two abreast. This means a cyclist may ride next to another cyclist to improve visibility and to reduce the length of a cycling group.
Pedestrians, remember to:
Use crosswalks where available.
When entering a crosswalk:
- Be sure approaching vehicles are slowing down to a stop before going further into the roadway, including those behind the first vehicle in line;
- Make eye contact with the driver to ensure you are seen;
- Use crosswalk lights or bright orange hand-flags to alert drivers of your presence in the crosswalk (vehicles are not required to stop until you enter the crosswalk);
- Cross as quickly as you are able.
Do not walk/run distracted.
Don’t let your phone distract you; give full attention to your surroundings. If using headphones, keep the volume low enough to hear someone or something approaching.
Wear light, bright colors and reflective materials, so drivers can see you. Carry or wear a light when walking or running at night.