“I sped. I followed too closely. I ran a stop sign. I almost hit a Chevy. I sped some more. I failed to yield at a crosswalk. I changed lanes in an intersection. I changed lanes without signaling while running a red light and speeding! …and I have unpaid parking tickets!”
Ok, maybe my driving’s not that bad, and I’m definitely NOT Jim Carrey. When we think of traffic violations, we usually think ‘cars’. But did you know that these traffic infractions might also apply to bicyclists? Yup. Sergeant Fred Myer with the Greeley Police Department says “…state statutes essentially make bicyclists responsible for all other ordinances and statutes that apply to the driver of an automobile, including driving under the influence (DUI).”
Now that Greeley has become more of a bike-friendly city (yay us!), here is some legislative gold that both bicyclists and motorists alike should be aware of. I’ll list the ordinance (taken straight out of the City of Greeley Municipal Code; 11.01.1412 Operation of bicycles and other human-powered vehicles), and then do my best to add a little…should we say…‘insight’.
No bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall be used to carry more persons at one (1) time than the number for which it is designed or equipped.
- Forget giving your buddy a lift, or your date a ride on the handlebars. You’ll have to meet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two.
No person riding upon any bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall attach the same or himself or herself to any motor vehicle upon a roadway.
- Late for work? Grabbing on to that truck might seem like a good idea, but you’ll most likely end up as road kill.
Persons riding bicycles or electrical assisted bicycles upon a roadway shall not ride more than two (2) abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.
- This can be dangerous! Think of a cluster of bicyclists as dominoes…it just takes one for the whole bunch to go down.
A person operating a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall keep at least one (1) hand on the handlebars at all times.
-We all know you can ride a bike with no handlebars…you don’t have to show off.
Except as otherwise provided in this Subsection (9), every person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall signal the intention to turn or stop in accordance with Section 11.01.903; except that a person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle may signal a right turn with the right arm extended horizontally.
A signal by hand and arm need not be given continuously if the hand is needed in the control or operation of the bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle.
- None of these hand signals involve the middle finger, sorry. (Though sometimes I want to give that signal continuously…)
A person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle upon and along a sidewalk or pathway or across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian and shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing such pedestrian. A person riding a bicycle in a crosswalk shall do so in a manner that is safe for pedestrians.
-Pedestrians: They’re people too.
A person riding a bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle shall dismount before entering any crosswalk where required by official traffic control devices or local ordinances.
-That’s why it’s called a crossWALK.
A bicycle or electrical assisted bicycle parked on a sidewalk shall not impede the normal and reasonable movement of pedestrian or other traffic.
-Don’t park like a jerk.
Except as authorized by Section 11.01.111, the rider of an electrical assisted bicycle shall not use the electrical motor on a bike or pedestrian path. (Ord. 08, 2011 §1)
-Be courteous, Speed Racer! Those side-walk people wouldn’t stand a chance.
If you’ve been drinking, get a sober ride or walk. Riding a bike while intoxicated subjects you to the same DUI provisions (11.01.1305 ) as any motorist. Take a hike, don’t drink and bike!
So now that you’re a little wiser on the rules, grab your bikes and ride on Greeley, ride on.
To read the full chapter from the City Code, please visit http://www.colocode.com/greeleypdf.html
As soon as it stops flooding, ride the Poudre Trail! Check out a map and info at http://greeleygov.com/CMO/PoudreRiver.aspx