Letter: ‘Rules of the Road’ as applicable to bicyclists as to motorists
May is Bicycle Awareness Month throughout the United States. Cottonwood has been a participant for 12 years.
Every May the bicycling community of Cottonwood participates in bicycle events to promote bicycling in the community. Yavapai County Community Heath along with the City of Cottonwood, and Bicycle Advisory Committee partner in Bike to Work Week as well as the Mayor’s ride, and a bike rodeo to educate our younger riders in bike riding, rules, and biking etiquette.
Cottonwood several years ago obtained the Bronze level of bicycle accommodations from the League of American Bicyclists. We have bike lanes as well as some bicycle directional signs and Share the Road Signs. The Bicycle Advisory Committee has been working diligently to upgrade their application to gain Silver status.
Soon, Cottonwood will have increased bicycle parking facilities in commercial areas as well as a bike corral in Old Town to contain several bicycles in one location.
Our bicycle community takes many forms-patrol officers on bicyclists, commuters who rely on their bike to get to and from work, bicyclist who ride for the enjoyment and exercise to have a healthy life style, kids who bike to school, and bicyclists who have most, if not all, of their possessions on their bicyclists.
Our bicycle community also has riders who do not realize that as bicyclists we have the responsibility to know the “Rules of the Road” that includes all the rules and responsibility for motorists. We are to obey traffic signals, not ride on the sidewalk, and ride with the traffic. The Bicycle Patrol of the Cottonwood Police Department works hard to notify bicyclists who are not obeying the rules to start obeying them. Group riding also is helpful in teaching not only riding skills but also the Rules of the Road.
Finally, I would encourage anyone who would like to ride with a group to join the Cottonwood OWLS to ride with us on a Friday from Jerona at 8 a.m. in May and 7 a.m. in the summer months.
Many bicyclists who are familiar riding on bike paths before moving to Arizona are afraid and intimidated to ride on our roads and highways. I encourage you to come join our group to gain confidence, explore Cottonwood, the Verde Villages, Clarkdale, and beyond on that wonderful two-wheeled non-polluting machine.