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Davis, California

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Editorial: Bike etiquette

As new students who don’t know proper biking etiquette join the crowds of bikers on campus, we urge everyone to bike with caution. Following biking laws and biking with consideration for those around you is necessary in order to avoid accidents, legal fines and angry bikers.

The Editorial Board has several suggestions to make our campus safer.

Do not block traffic. As a basic rule, the left side of the lane is for faster bikes, while the right side is for the slower riders. Bike lanes are not wide enough for groups to ride slowly side-by-side with their friends. Be respectful of the 30 bikers behind you trying to get around you.

Biking while listening to music is fun, but it can prevent you from hearing your surroundings, such as a car horn or someone passing you from behind. It is perfectly legal to wear just one earbud while biking, but this doesn’t mean you’re allowed to weave back and forth in the lane to the beat of your music.

While biking on city roads, you can get fined more than $100 for cruising through a stop sign. You can also get fined for biking at night without a bike light, though police officers might also offer you a light if you’re lucky. However, you might be asked to take an online bicycle traffic course, on top of paying a costly processing fee.

Additionally, one of the easiest ways to end up injured or in court is by biking while under the influence. Since you are operating a vehicle, you are putting yourself and others in danger while biking drunk. Biking under the influence results in a BUI citation, which can be more than a $250 fine and goes on your driving record.

At the higher learning institution we attend, we would hope students bike with common sense. Signal when you’re turning. Yield to oncoming traffic. Don’t be obnoxious on the road. This way, we can all enjoy this bike-friendly town to its greatest potential.

And although it does not seem popular to wear helmets in Davis, we hope that those who do can be regarded highly for their respect toward the safety of their brains. After all, we go to school to learn, and we should value this organ enough to protect it.


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