Rules of the Road_OLD

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Our roads are changing and it's important to take the time to learn the rules of the road. Understanding new roadway features and refreshing your knowledge of existing laws is an important first step. In the coming months, we'll be reaching out to communities across the city to share information about new roadway features and rules of the road.

If you’re driving there…

Stop for pedestrians at crosswalks.Look out for pedestrians and other road users.

Slow down and obey the posted speed limit.Slow down and follow the speed limit.

Yield to pedestrians and cyclists when turning.Yield to pedestrians and people on bikes  when turning.

If you’re going by bike…

Use lights and reflectors at night and when visibility is poor.If you’re riding at night use a light and wear reflective clothing.

Always wear a helmet and never ride with headphones. Helmets dramatically reduce the risk of head injury in a bicycle crash.Wear a helmet at all times. It’s the law.

Don't pass on the right. Motorists may not look for or see a bicycle passing on the right.Make sure drivers see you and be especially careful near trucks and large vehicles.

If you’re a pedestrian…

Before crossing, look left, right, then left again.Look before you cross. Drivers may not see you. 

Watch out for trucks and buses backing out of parking spaces and driveways.Look out for backing vehicles, especially large trucks that may not see you.

Excessive alcohol consumption can impair the motor skills and judgment of pedestrians just as it does for drivers. Don't take the risk.Don’t take a risk. Walking while intoxicated can be just as dangerous as driving.

What we all need to know…

Speed – In Seattle, the speed limit on residential streets is 25 mph and 30 mph on arterial streets, unless otherwise posted.

Intersections – Drivers are required to allow pedestrians and bicycles to cross the road within a marked or unmarked crosswalk.

If approaching an intersection with no stop sign or traffic light, in the absence of a pedestrian, the vehicle to the left must yield to the vehicle on the right.

Traffic Signals – Pedestrians, people on bikes, and people driving must obey traffic signals and traffic control devices unless otherwise directed by a traffic or police officer.

Cell Phones – It is against the law to text or use a hand-held cell phone when driving.

Bicycling on the Road – When riding on a roadway, a cyclist has all the rights and responsibilities of a vehicle driver. For night bicycle riding, a white front light (not a reflector) visible for 500 feet and a red rear reflector are required.

Sidewalks – Drivers and bicyclists must yield to pedestrians on sidewalks and in crosswalks.