Bike Safety 101

Biking Through IdahoThe rush of the wind in your face and the pavement flying by bring back that familiar passion and contentment. Nothing but you, your bike, and the Idaho highway ahead of you will make the perfect combination. The most important part of your journey, is your safe return home. In order to keep you safe and to allow you to keep riding Idaho has establish laws for cyclists. So, before you head out onto the road, be sure to review bike safety basics.

Safety Equipment 101
Lights- Bikes are required to be equipped with a light on the front. This light must be able to illuminate up to 500 feet. It is to be turned on when the bike is in use between sunset and sunrise and when the day is cloudy enough that visibility is impaired.

Reflectors-A reflector is required for the back of the bike. Cyclists may wear other reflectors on their clothing or attached to the bike.

Helmets-  Helmets are not required by law but are a good idea according to the most national cyclist organizations. In the event of a fall or accident, helmets can dramatically reduce the severity of injuries to the head.
Passengers On Bikes
It is illegal in Idaho to have more people on a bike than what it is built for. Therefore most bikes can only have one rider though tandems can, of course, have two.
Bike Positioning On Road
Idaho cyclists are to remain as close to the right hand side of the road as possible unless making a left hand turn. Also, if the cyclist is on a one way road then he or she can ride on either side of the road but is to remain as close to the edge as possible. These two things are particularly important in such places as Boise or Meridian and other large cities of Idaho. No one wants to be involved in an accident.
If cyclists are riding together, they are required to travel in a single file. The exception to this is if they are on a road or path set aside specifically for bike riding. Then the two Idaho cyclists can ride together two abreast.
The 'Rolling Stop'
When coming to a stop sign in Idaho, cyclists are required to slow down and are to give right of way to motor vehicles. However, according to Idaho bike laws, if the intersection is safe to pass through, a cyclist does not have to come to a complete stop before passing through it or making a right hand turn.
However, at a traffic light, a cyclist may not do the 'rolling stop'. They must come to a complete stop at the red light like any other vehicle.
The Boise GreenbeltRiding On The Sidewalks
It is legal to ride a bicycle on a sidewalk unless official Idaho traffic signs are posted that specifically prohibit it. However, pedestrians have the right of way on sidewalks. Also, if a cyclist is coming up on a pedestrian or another cyclist, he or she must give an audible signal before passing.

Keeping all of these bike safety tips in mind will not only keep you safe, but will make biking more enjoyable.

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