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40
votes
8answers
5k views

Why is it safer to bike with traffic, instead of facing oncoming cars?

There has been an ongoing debate in my area's local newspaper, regarding biking with vs. against the flow of traffic. A recent incident in which a cyclist was hit from behind, and later died of his ...
38
votes
25answers
4k views

How can I make my bike (and myself) visible at night?

By winter I will be commuting on my bike at night. How can I make my bike as visible as possible to all car drivers?
28
votes
8answers
717 views

How can I be visible in the dark when I'm signalling a turn?

My bike and I are fairly visible at night--white light in front, red light in the back, bright yellow fenders, reflective tabs and a light on my helmet. I use hand signals to alert motorists when I'm ...
26
votes
5answers
1k views

Intersection detection doesn't notice me, what should I do?

I have just come to the USA (Bay Area) and got a bicycle to commute to my university. Being new to this place I kept wondering why sometimes I have to wait for a long time for a green light to make a ...
20
votes
11answers
720 views

Safety guidelines for cycling in traffic

Please post your safety tips for cycling/commuting that should help you get to your destination place in one piece. I came across a nice printed guideline a few years ago when working as courier, it ...
20
votes
5answers
2k views

Which states or countries have stop-sign-as-yield laws for bicyclists (Idaho stop law)?

In Idaho (PDF), bicyclists are allowed to treat stop signs as yields, and red lights as stop signs (essentially; see the actual law for details). This seems like a very reasonable approach, balancing ...
19
votes
8answers
2k views

Arguments for/against bike lanes?

What are the arguments for and against bike lanes? Can anyone summarize the best reasons they're good for and bad for cyclists and automobile drivers? For example, Are there some environments ...
19
votes
7answers
1k views

What are some alternatives to fruitlessly ringing my bell at a motorist?

I doubt that motor-vehicle drivers can hear the "ding" sound that a bicycle bell makes. What are some better alternatives?
19
votes
6answers
446 views

Do cyclists warrant special consideration under traffic laws?

I recently saw a YouTube channel where a motorist with an agenda has taken it upon himself to film cyclists as they break traffic laws. Most (perhaps not all) of the actions I observed would be what I ...
18
votes
7answers
1k views

Bicycling and a Right Turn Only Lane?

When commuting with a bike I usually stick to the right lane (I am based in the USA). When approaching a right turn only lane while biking, should I stay in the turn lane and signal to the car behind ...
17
votes
5answers
332 views

Discouraging motorists from stopping at an intersection when they have the right-of-way

Where I live, bicycles are widely accepted in traffic; motorists are on balance considerate and careful around us. But on an almost daily basis, I run into motorists who are too "polite" at ...
15
votes
2answers
641 views

Passing cars on the right, and later merging into their lane

My commute takes me along a fairly busy road, with 4 lanes of traffic and parked cars along most of it. There are no bike lanes, but in some places, it's wide enough that I can easily pass traffic on ...
13
votes
4answers
613 views

Is complaining to companies about bad driving like howling at the moon?

On my commute in this morning I found myself in another situation where I was in conflict with another road user. (Briefly, a truck and I arrived at a roundabout at a roughly similar time, but I was ...
13
votes
4answers
365 views

Determining if a road is safe to bike on

How do you determine which roads are safe to ride on and which should be avoided? What traffic patterns do you feel comfortable riding in, and which ones set off alarms? What sorts of intersections do ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it legal to pass a car on the right when that car is turning?

So I've been poring over the bikes SE, and as a recreational biker and an automobile commuter, I'm naturally most interested in topics addressing how bikes interact with automotive traffic. In one ...
10
votes
2answers
1k views

What do you do when a bus stops in front of you?

When a double decker bus stops in front of you, what do you do? Is it safe to attempt to overtake the bus?
9
votes
1answer
251 views

What is the proper technique for crossing railroad tracks?

I cross railroads as perpendicularly as is possible, but that's all I know to do. Safety is a priority, speed not so much. Specifically: Is there an optimum speed? Should you pedal through them ...
8
votes
3answers
606 views

What does “claiming the lane” mean?

If one is "claiming the lane" does that mean: a) they simply ride on the street (i.e. on the left side of the lane in the US, Germany, France, ..) or b) they are riding in the middle of the lane, ...
8
votes
4answers
333 views

Can bicycling cause runner's knee?

I'm a longtime runner who has never, I mean NEVER, had any running-related injury before. About 2 1/2 months ago, I started bicycling to my new job, about 5 very up-and-down, stop-and-go urban miles ...
8
votes
4answers
230 views

Supervising a beginner in traffic

Let's say you persuade some significant other to ride with you in the city. You both have good bikes, they are inexperienced, and you are (I am) used to commuting, including in traffic. How do you ...
8
votes
2answers
350 views

How do Traffic Lights Notice Bicyclists?

This totally unrelated reply raised my question about traffic lights. I am starting to think that my chinese head lamp is a magical instrument, every time I go near traffic lights they turn green. It ...
8
votes
2answers
177 views

What natural features and governmental conditions contribute to a bicycle friendly town/city?

I enjoy bicycling the most in cities that provide separate lanes for bicyclists - Portland and Boulder come to mind. In addition to bicycle lanes, what other governmental/civic actions ensure a safe ...
7
votes
6answers
321 views

Left Turn Across Major Intersection

I'm new at biking, and have seen many examples of left-turn situations, but none that quite match this one. Simply, what is the proper / best way to complete the turn pictured below, or is it smarter ...
7
votes
3answers
269 views

wind noise obscuring traffic noise

My eyesight isn't so good so I'm more reliant on my ears to let me know that there's traffic close by. Normally I'm fine, but at higher speeds, the noise of wind blowing past my ears can obscure the ...
6
votes
4answers
202 views

What is the best way to stop and restart at a stoplight?

Since your feet should hardly touch the ground when the saddle is at optimal height, what is the best approach to stopping at a stoplight and then quickly re-starting when riding in traffic.
6
votes
4answers
519 views

If a lane is going to expand should the left lane be taken prior to the expansion?

This is US law and roads. Drive on right side. Speed Limit is 45mph (72kmh) And as @Benedikt Bauer pointed out solid white lines are not supposed to be crossed. In the morning though there is very ...
6
votes
2answers
542 views

How do you ride on a road that doesn't have a bicycle lane?

I live in Washington State and here the law states cyclists have the choice to ride on the sidewalks, bicycle lane, or on the road with other traffic. I usually just ride to school and back, which is ...
6
votes
2answers
263 views

How to get back on the road again?

I am from Mumbai, India. And as some of you might be knowing, it is a pretty crazy traffic on roads here. Many times, it so happens that trucks, cars etc. may force you to get off the road while you ...
5
votes
4answers
329 views

How far do I “pull over” in a bike lane?

If I am riding down a marked bike lane on a road which is adjacent to the curb, and I need to stop for a very short time (e.g. to adjust something, turn on lights, or drink some water), how far should ...
5
votes
4answers
655 views

Cycling traffic signs and rules in Germany

I'm over 30 and have just started cycling in real traffic, my first experience, as I have only ever ridden as a child in parks and such. I live in a university town in the state of Baden-Württemberg ...
5
votes
1answer
376 views

Do cyclists make safer drivers?

Is there any research that suggests cyclists are safer drivers than drivers who don't cycle? Is there evidence to suggest the opposite? Please remember this is not a discussion. Please include ...
4
votes
7answers
536 views

How would the “pros” bike this commute?

I've been putting up some pounds and have a bike gathering dust at home =D I normally commute by bus or carpool, but would like an opinion from some more seasoned bikers on how you'd tackle this ...
4
votes
2answers
214 views

Rules for rotary/roundabout?

Does a cyclist have the right of way in a traffic circle/roundabout/rotary (in the US)? Any tips for riding around one of these scary things? This past summer, I was riding around a rotary (a.k.a. ...
3
votes
4answers
351 views

Should I ring my bell before going around corners?

I'm in a town in Bavaria, Germany and the local custom with the more dangerous corners is to honk a horn or ring a bell. Will this actually make me safer? Currently I am cycling in a half-urban ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What does a flashing yellow arrow traffic signal mean?

While bike commuting in an urban setting, I've started noticing that some intersections have flashing yellow turn signals during part of the light cycle. What does this mean? If I am on my bike in the ...
3
votes
4answers
613 views

What statutes govern the directing of traffic by citizens in Massachusetts?

Are there laws or statutes governing the directing of traffic by citizens or "members of the public"? A scenario I often encounter is one in which someone — typically another rider or pedestrian in a ...
3
votes
2answers
89 views

Are the country roads quieter on weekdays or weekends?

I'm planning a two day trip down the UK country roads. Which days of the week would see the least traffic on the country roads? I'll be cycling from dawn till late afternoon on both days.
2
votes
3answers
296 views

Using the outer lane of an inner-city one way system - where do I ride?

In my nearest town centre there is a fearsome one-way system with three lanes of traffic. This cuts through the town and is unavoidable - you have to cross it to get anywhere. It is always busy but ...
2
votes
4answers
257 views

Cycling in high traffic roads

Riding on roads? I want to go to the work (in São Paulo, Brazil), by bicycle. But I live in a neighbor city, and I need to get a high traffic road. What is your experience with this, and could it ...
2
votes
2answers
178 views

How to avoid riding on a gravel on the road sides? + Riding through traffic lights

I'm commuting to work almost every day. The roads on my way are quite thin so I have ride on the edge of it. But there is usually some gravel and it's quite hard to ride on that especially when riding ...