Wednesday Wheeler Safety Policy Agreement
Large groups of cyclists, not just Wednesday Wheelers, can be a danger to themselves and create pent up frustration in drivers. A primary goal of ours is to minimize our impact on traffic at all times. This will enhance the safety of all local cyclists by displaying a sense of courtesy toward all road users, which encourages motorists' reciprocity.
The Safety Committee and Wheelers responding to the committee's outreach agree that the best way forward is for each of us to respond to car back, regroup off the road, and accommodate traffic moving in our direction.
This policy is a first step to ensure our safety by focusing on our interaction with traffic. We will monitor what happens and listen to your feedback. If, on reflection and with consultation, we need to modify this policy, we will.
I. Respond to "car back". The call of "car back" means that there is a motor vehicle behind us that we expect will pass. The call is a notification to move immediately to the right as close to the road edge as is safe to allow you to ride in a predictable manner. Ride single file, giving the driver enough space to pass safely, and continuing to do so until there are no more vehicles seeking to overtake us. While responding to "car back" on a Wheeler ride:
- Respond immediately. Finish your conversation later.
- Align right regardless of how far ahead of the motorist you are.
- Communicate with one another as all riders are aligning right
- If riding on the left, communicate to the rider on your right that you intend to move to the right.
- If riding on the right, make space for the rider on your left to move into line and communicate to nearby riders what you are doing.
- Pass other riders only when you know the motor vehicle has overtaken you or otherwise cleared.
- If you cannot monitor traffic regularly and have difficulty hearing, ride to the right at all times.
II. Regroup off the road. During regrouping, do not obstruct cars or pedestrians at the side of the road, at a driveway, or in a parking lot. When regrouping:
- Move far enough off the traveled way so no one in the group obstructs traffic.
- Regroup away from intersections.
III. Spread the group to accommodate passing traffic. Ride in groups small enough to accommodate motor vehicles passing safely. Groups of eight (8) or fewer riders are appropriate for most conditions. When in the presence of passing traffic:
- Leave enough distance between the groups, so that a motorist can pass safely from gap to gap. This will be at least three (3) car lengths, more for longer vehicles.
- Move to another group only in the absence of overtaking traffic and maintain gaps that can accommodate an overtaking vehicle.
- Establish passable groups when starting from a stop.
Helping Fellow Riders
When you notice behavior that differs from this policy, inform the Wheeler politely. If you are the one receiving such a message, know that it is given with our safety in mind.