Learn to ride safe all year long at Safe Cycling For All Seasons event

fat-tire-GR bikes

Have you wanted to go for a bike ride in the middle of winter? Worried that your kids will be safe riding around the neighborhood? Maybe you’d like to know a little more about why Grand Rapids has so many bike lanes.

Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition logoOn Monday, October 23, 2017, the Greater Grand Rapids Bicycle Coalition is hosting Safe Cycling For All Seasons at the Grand Rapids Main Public Library, located at 111 Library NE in the heart of downtown.

The event starts at 7:30 p.m. During the short presentation, folks can learn the basics of bicycle safety and how to have fun no matter the weather.

Don’t worry about staying in your lane (figuratively), the team from GGRBC will follow-up the presentation with a Q&A session to answer all your inquiries into safe riding and the items to take into consideration for all the different seasons and conditions.

All riders are welcome to this are event.

Here are a few tips about the local bicycling rules (from grdrivingchange.org):

  1. Bicycles belong on the road – Bicyclists are encouraged to ride on the road with the flow of traffic in either the bike lane or traffic lane except where prohibited by law (like expressways, for example). Riding on the road increases the visibility of bicyclists, leading to fewer crashes. In certain areas, including downtown Grand Rapids, riding a bicycle on the sidewalk is prohibited.
  2. Bicyclists must obey all traffic rules and laws – Just like any other driver on the road, bicyclists must stop at stop signs and red lights. This makes them more predictable to drivers and safer on the road.
  3. Bicyclists must be visible – If drivers can see you, they aren’t likely to hit you. Bicyclists should wear bright, reflective clothing. When riding at night, they are required to have white front lights and red rear lights or reflectors that are visible for at least 500 feet, or about the length of a city block.
  4. Bicyclists must signal their turns – Signal your intentions clearly and in plenty of time, including:• Right turns by extending your right arm or upturned left arm.• Left turns by extending your left arm straight out to the left.• Stop or signal that you’re slowing by extending your left arm straight down with your palm facing rearward. Learn more about proper signaling with this video.
  5. What is a sharrow? – Sharrows are just one of the markings you may encounter on our city’s streets. A sharrow is a shared lane marker that indicates proper lane positioning for bicyclists, so they can be seen and avoid riding in the “door zone.” When you encounter these markings on the street, you should be aware that bicycles may be sharing the traffic lane.
  6. Be predictable – Ride in a straight line and do not swerve between cars. Use hand signals and check behind you before you turn or change lanes.
  7. Riding side-by-side is allowed – Riding two people side-by-side is allowed in Michigan. However, bicyclists can receive citations for riding more than two abreast. Be courteous and “single up” when other road users are present and it is safe to do so. Remember, sharing the road is a two-way street.