As increasing numbers of bicyclists and pedestrians enjoy getting out of the house during spring, TransOptions offers a reminder about safety laws and suggestions while sharing the road.
Pedestrian Safety Law
Have you seen this sign? Do you know that New Jersey Law requires motorists to stop and stay stopped for pedestrians in crosswalks? Stopping for pedestrians waiting to cross in a crosswalk is not just being a good samaritan - it's the law!
Failure to observe the pedestrian safety law may subject you to one or more of the following:
- 2 points on your driver's license
- $200 fine
- 15 days community service
Pedestrians also have a responsibility under this law. They must obey traffic signals and use crosswalks at signalized intersections. Violators are subject to a $54 fine as well as risking their lives by jaywalking.
Bicycle Safety Laws
Sharing the Road
Bicycles are considered vehicles and therefore are required to follow the same rules that apply to all other motorists on the road.
Wearing a Helmet: It's the Law.
Young people under the age of 17 are required to wear an approved helmet when cycling, roller skating, in-line skating, or skateboarding.
Head injuries from not wearing a helmet are the most frequent cause of death and serious injury for cyclists. According to the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety, many bicycle deaths result from bicycle-motor vehicle collisions; injuries not involving cars can happen anywhere, including parks, bike paths or driveways.
Required Cycling Equipment
Bicycles are also required to be equipped with a horn or bell and proper lighting (white light in front and a red light on the rear) when operating during nighttime hours.
It's challenging for motorists to see bicyclists and pedestrians during morning and evening hours and on cloudy days. Wearing bright and reflective clothing can help pedestrians and bicyclists stay safe by being seen.