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DefensiveDriving.com (in Texas) on cyclists(5 posts)

DefensiveDriving.com (in Texas) on cyclistsTig
Nov 18, 2001 8:11 PM
In Texas you can get a traffic ticket dismissed if you take an approved defensive driving course. I got nicked last month speeding (one of my weaknesses!). I took this online class and was pleased to see several references on driving safely near cyclists. Too bad more people that need to learn about their responsibility towards riders who share the road won't ever read such information, or will ignore it if they do read it. Hopefully some will learn, but I have my doubts. Here's an example of the positive content in the course:

Interacting with Bicycles

Bicycle riders on public streets have the same rights and responsibilities as automobile drivers. Drivers of motor vehicles must treat bicycle riders the same as drivers of other motor vehicles. Bicyclists are not out of place on the roadway -- they are part of the traffic and share the road with other drivers. They must obey stop signs, traffic lights, and most other traffic laws and signs. Special care must be used near bicyclists because any accident with them will probably result in serious injury. This means that automobile drivers must leave safe passing room and must avoid sharp turns that threaten the safety of the bicyclist.

Although bicyclists normally ride near the right hand curb or edge of the roadway, they can legally move left to turn left, to pass another vehicle or bicycle, or to avoid debris or parked cars. They may have to swerve to avoid a car door suddenly opening. Expect any of these moves by bicyclists in a main traffic lane. Remember! On one-way streets, this can be the left hand lane.

Bicycle operators and passengers under 18 years of age (including children in attached bicycle seats or in towed trailers) may be required to wear a properly fitted and fastened bicycle helmet, depending on local ordinances. This helmet must be labeled to show that it meets applicable safety standards. Violation of these local ordinances may be punishable by a fine. Check with your local police department to determine the applicable ordinance.

When the lane is too narrow to allow you to pass a bicyclist safely, wait until the next lane is clear and give the bicyclist all the rights of any other slow moving vehicle.

A motorist parked at a curb should not open a door on the traffic side of a vehicle without looking for other vehicles, including bicycles or motorcycles.

Bicycle riders may give right turn signals with their right arm held straight out, pointing right. Remember! Bicycles are small and sometimes they are difficult to see.
God bless Texas nmdavidl
Nov 19, 2001 5:29 AM
re: DefensiveDriving.com (in Texas) on cyclistsclimbo
Nov 19, 2001 5:36 AM
that's nice but how many driver's follow those rules?? Same problems everywhere, NJ has that written in the driver's code too but it doesn't help much.
re: DefensiveDriving.com (in Texas) on cyclistsTechniKal
Nov 19, 2001 8:43 AM
From my experience in Central Texas, more cyclist need refresher courses on the rules of the road than motorist. I see motorist do stupid things, but I see a -lot- of cyclist blow stop signs and lights, ride the wrong way on one way streets and make general idiots of themselves on the road.

Same rights, Same rules.
So very true! -NMTig
Nov 19, 2001 11:11 AM