The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

August 14, 2009

Enid police say cyclists, pedestrians also must be just as vigilant as motorists on city roadways

People using Enid’s roadways are urged to exercise more caution and abide by the rules of the road.

Four fatalities have occurred on Enid roads this year, two this month.

“Motorists need to devote and pay attention when approaching slow-moving traffic, such as pedestrians and bicycles,” Enid Police Department Lt. Eric Holtzclaw said. “It’s very important motorists always be vigilant of other types of traffic.”

However, Holtzclaw said he’s not just “picking on motorists.” Pedestrians and those riding bicycles are just as responsible for following laws and ordinances governing the roads.

“It’s a group effort,” Holtzclaw said. “Everybody needs to do their part to make sure everyone is safe on the roadways. These rules are designed for everyone’s safety, not only motorists but pedestrians and everyone who occupies the road.”

People riding bicycles on Enid roads are required to follow the same rules as someone driving a car, he said.

Law requires bicyclists to “ride as close as is safe to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway.” The law allows for exceptions such as debris or surface hazards, pedestrian or animals and parked vehicles.

Enid city ordinances prohibit the riding of bicycles on sidewalks, passing other vehicles between lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction and riding more than two abreast. Bicyclists are required to only use bicycle paths when provided and not the roadway. City ordinance also prohibits bicyclists from carrying packages that prevent the rider from keeping at least one hand on the handlebars.

Oklahoma law requires vehicles passing a bicycle in the same direction to leave a distance of no less than three feet.

Holtzclaw said bicyclists need to ride on the far right of the road, with the flow of traffic, and in single file, not side by side.

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