New bike safety law aims to improve cyclist safety

Biking the Ozarks

Fayetteville, Ark. (KNWA) — On July 1, a new Arkansas law that gives bikers more freedom will go into effect.

Arkansas Act 650 is expected to improve the safety of bicyclists by cutting down the time they’re in intersections.

It makes Arkansas the second state to make it legal for people traveling by bicycle to treat stop signs as yields and red lights as stop signs. The main goal is to keep bicyclists safe all while reducing traffic congestion at lights or stop signs.

Sergeant Tony Murphy with the Fayetteville Department police said as long as everyone is aware of what’s going on around them, the adjustment shouldn’t be hard.

“I would say nothing has changed really as far as the vehicles,” Sgt. Murphy said. “Always be on the lookout for bicyclists, especially here in Fayetteville because we have lots of people that like to utilize their bicycles to get around town.”

While the law was backed by several advocacy groups like Bike NWA and the League of American Cyclists, some rides have concerns.

“No matter how many laws are put in place, the best person to protect you is yourself,” said cyclist, Brayden Wiley. “You’ve to be in charge and take caution when you’re out on the road. It’s up to you.”

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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