The Newport Police Department’s Community Policing Unit in partnership with Bike Newport is reaching out to educate and inform cyclists and motorists alike about the correct and safe way to share the road.
The standard rules of the road for cars are required knowledge to earn a drivers license.But what are the rules of the road for bicycles? The answer is simple: the same rules apply to cars and bicycles. If you can’t do it in a car, don’t do it on your bicycle.
- All traffic signals must be obeyed, including stop signs and red lights. Direction of traffic must be observed – bicycles must follow one ways and ride on the correct side of the road.
- No riding on sidewalks. (exception for children up to 13 years)No riding in crosswalks.
- Lights are required at night.
- Hand signals are required at all times.
Bike Newport is assisting the NPD to get the word out to inform bicyclists of RI law and Newport ordinances by printing the rules on handouts, in both English and Spanish, to educate cyclists in advance of warnings and/or fines.
Bike Newport and the NPD are also collaborating on Bicycling in Newport 101 for Community Leaders, sponsored by AARP of RI and taking place tonight, Tuesday, Sept. 27. The class will serve as a model for future classes available to the public. The goal is to understand what it means to follow the rules for cyclists, to practice some specific techniques, and to identify our best methods of encouraging safe sharing of the road.
Of the Community Policing / Bike Newport collaboration on bicycle education, Community Policing Commander Lt. William Fitzgerald offered, “I’m excited about this. We’re way ahead of the curve on this collaboration. We share Bike Newport’s commitment to encouraging the use of bicycles as a healthy alternative to the car and as a method to reduce traffic. Working together we can reach more people. It can take a long time to change habits, but with education and enforcement, we’ll get there.”
Also on the horizon is a City Council Community Workshop focused on bicycling in Newport. The community workshop will take place at City Hall on Wednesday, October 5 at 6:30pm. The workshop is open to all residents.
Bike Newport has published an online survey available to collect community input in advance of that meeting. Please visit www.bikenewport.me to share your thoughts, concerns and vision of bicycling in Newport.