NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — You’ve heard of distracted driving, but how about distracted bicycling? Or walking?
As we head into the summer months, there will be more people sharing the roads.
10 On Your Side talked with Norfolk’s Director of Transit, Amy Inman, about ways to stay safe.
Inman is excited about the city’s growing bike lane network and popular Pace bike rentals.
With more than 5,000 trips logged in the last 8 weeks, it’s clear more people are pedaling and that means more chances for accidents.
“Always be vigilant, always, always be vigilant,” Inman said “Just like a motorist bikes should pay attention to the traffic signals and the signs.”
Virginia has rules for cyclists and pedestrians, as well as motorists. Bicyclists should follow the rules that apply to drivers — that means riding on the right, and obeying street signs and signals.
They should use hand signals for turning and ride no more than two side by side.
At night, use headlamps and rear reflectors and be aware of the surroundings.
“Absolutely do not be a distracted cyclist or pedestrian, make sure that you can hear,” Inman said.
Earbuds can cancel out the noise around you, so never wear them in both ears.
Drivers also need to cut out distractions and be patient.
Remember pedestrians and cyclists have the right of way in cross walks. If there’s a pedestrian signal they should hit the button and cross when it tells them to cross.
Drivers must always yield to pedestrians and give them plenty of time to cross safely.
When passing a bicycle, drivers should allow at least three feet.
Summer also means kids will be out more, so Inman reminds you to be mindful.
“Kids don’t always think they might be chasing a ball, or they might just be trying to get home from a summer activity.”
May is bike month in Norfolk. There are lots of activities planned to promote bicycling as a healthy, economical and environmentally-friendly way to get around.