Know the laws and policies
In general, a person riding a bicycle on a roadway has all the same rights and duties as a person driving a motor vehicle. Here are a few bicycle laws that bicyclists and drivers should be aware of in order to keep each other safe.
- Red lights: It might be annoying to those waiting in their cars, but under Indiana law a bicyclist is allowed to run a red light if it’s been red for longer than two minutes.
- Stop signs: Just like driving a car, bicyclists are always required to come to a stop and wait their turn before going.
- Lights and hand signals: At night, bicycles are required to be equipped with a front white light and a red rear light. A bike bell is not required, but highly recommended. Bicyclists are also legally required to signal their turns using arm signals: left arm fully extended for a left turn and right arm fully extended or left arm raised at 90° angle for a right turn.
- Sharing the road: A bicyclist always has the right to occupy the full lane, even when there is a bike lane or a sidewalk. They do this to keep themselves safe and visible. Always pass a bicyclist with care. Indiana’s safe passing law went into effect on July 1, 2019. This means that motorists must give bicyclists 3 feet of clearance while passing.
- Sidewalks: Local City of Bloomington laws allow bicycles of any size to use the sidewalks except in the downtown area. Always yield to pedestrians.