Confusion about traffic laws regarding bicyclists and motorists may lead to serious injury and death. Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) statistics show that one Idaho bicyclist was injured or killed every 27 hours during 2013, which is nearly one per day.
To help explain bicycle and pedestrian traffic laws along with other safety issues related to bicyclists and pedestrians, ITD and local bicycle- and pedestrian-safety advocates will host an open house from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 6, at ITD Headquarters, 3311, W. State St.
Most Idaho bicyclists know that the Gem State has a unique law that allows them to proceed through red lights, unlike motorists who must wait for a green light before proceeding. Bicycle enthusiasts in other states envy this law, where it is sometime referred to as the “Idaho Stop Law.”
“Idaho Code 49-720 requires bicyclists to treat and red lights as stop signs, and stop signs as yields,” said Boise Police Officer Kyle Wills in a press release. “This is sometimes difficult for both bicyclists and drivers to put into practice. When there’s confusion about who has the right of way it can lead to conflicts at intersections where bicyclists are far more vulnerable and can get seriously injured or killed,” he said.
To help explain Idaho’s bicycle laws, Peter Flucke, who is a national expert on bicycle and pedestrian laws, will attend Tuesday’s open house to help answer questions in an exchange of ideas and concerns from the public about bicycle and pedestrian safety in the Treasure Valley.