- Letters to the Editor
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As an AARP Safe Driver district coordinator and instructor (Downey area), I must address an understatement in the June 6 article "Bicycles: Rules of the Road."
The article by Lars Clutterham stated, "Ride on the street, you are not required to ride on the sidewalk."
A bicycle is considered a vehicle, like an automobile, with full use of the street and its laws. In the state of California, it already is illegal to ride a bicycle on pedestrian sidewalks.
This law applies to adult-sized bicycles such as 10 speed bikes, cruiser bikes, beach cruisers, etc. "Sidewalk bikes" are the exception; sidewalk bikes are the small children's bicycle, with or without training wheels.
The small apron (driveway) found on all corners are for wheelchairs, walkers or other conveyance and not for the use of bicycle riders on sidewalks using it to cross a street.
The issue of bicycle riding on sidewalks and the citing of riders doing so is low priority for any police department. However, if you ride on the sidewalk and hit a pedestrian, you will be held responsible for any injury caused to that pedestrian by you riding on the sidewalk.
Bicycle riders, stay on the street.
If I'm not mistaken, the rules on hand-held cell phones also apply to cyclists - something Lars forgot to mention.
Published: June 13, 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 09