Motorists can help make driving, cycling safer

info@islandpacket.comJuly 1, 2013 

Its crunch time on Hilton Head Island, with bustling roads and pathways and visitors experiencing and enjoying our special island. Most visiting cyclists are courteous and ride safely, but some whiz through stop signs, impervious to the world.

A few safety tips might help island motorists. When turning into and out of a street, use your directional signal. Cyclists aren't mind readers. Before turning from a side street onto major streets, such as Pope Avenue or William Hilton Parkway, look right and left -- twice -- before accelerating. If cyclists are waiting at the crosswalk, make eye contact before you zoom out.

At crosswalks, state law requires that motorists yield to cyclists or pedestrians who are in the crosswalks. If they are standing off the crosswalk waiting to cross, you have the right of way. If you are at a signalized crossing, please note whether cyclists and pedestrians have the "white light" to cross. If so, hold your turn and let them cross. When following spandex-clad riders (they are out for exercise), remember bikes are vehicles. They are entitled under state law to ride on public roads, even if next to an adjoining pathway. Please share the road and pass safely.

We have been designated a bicycling friendly community. Following these safety trips can prevent crashes and frustration and help make our visitors' experience positive and memorable. Sending a visitor home with a broken arm or worse because some motorist didn't wait or pay attention is not cool.

Frank Babel

Bicycling Advisory Committee

Hilton Head Island

The Island Packet is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service