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CYCLING SAFETY TIPS

Posted on Friday July 10, 2020

York Regional Police is reminding cyclists and motorists to stay safe as the use of bicycles has increased across the region.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been an increase in the number of people using bicycles on York Region roads and trails. As a cyclist, you must share the road with others. Under the Highway Traffic Act, a bicycle is a vehicle, just like a car, therefore cyclists must obey all traffic laws, including stopping at stop signs and red lights, as well as signaling turns. Some other important laws cyclists need to be aware of include:

  • Cyclists should wear reflective clothing and must have a white light on the front and a red light on the rear of their bicycle when riding at dawn, dusk and at night. Failure to do so can result in a $110 fine
  • All bicycle riders under the age of 18 are required to wear an approved bicycle helmet when travelling on any public road. Failure to do so can result in a $75 fine. Wearing a helmet is highly recommended for cyclists of all ages

Drivers must also be mindful that they must share the roadway with cyclists. Extra care should be used including checking blind spots. Drivers must also:

  • Leave a minimum of one metre of distance when passing a cyclist. If you are unable to give one metre of distance then you are not allowed to pass. Failure to give space can result in a fine of $110. Drivers who contest their ticket by going to court may face a fine of up to $500 if found guilty. Upon conviction, two demerit points will also be assigned against the individual’s driver record
  • Use caution when opening your vehicle doors to ensure they don’t strike a cyclist. The penalty for improper opening of a vehicle door (for driver or passenger) is a fine of $365 upon conviction and three demerit points

For more information on safe cycling, you can download Cycling Skills – Ontario’s Guide to Safe Cycling at the following link: http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/safety/pdfs/cycling-skills.pdf

You can also visit the York Regional Police website at: http://www.yrp.ca/BikeSafety