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Basic Traffic Rules
  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Check your brakes before riding.
  • Obey the same traffic rules as all motorists, except for differences specified in Minnesota law.
  • Obey all traffic signs and signals.
  • Stop before entering a public road, scan for traffic and signal before proceeding onto the roadway.
  • Ride on the right side of the road, close to the curb, leaving enough room to maneuver around debris and other obstacles.
Parked cars
  • Ride a car door's length from parked cars, keeping alert for cars pulling out or drivers opening a door suddenly.
  • Ride in single file.
  • Use hand signals.
  • Call out when you're preparing to pass (i.e. "On your left!") or stopping suddenly ("Stopping!").
Left turns with no stop

Bicyclists can make a left turn in two ways: 1) cross at the pedestrian crossing, walking the bike through the intersection and 2) check for traffic from behind, signal, move near the center line, check for oncoming traffic, proceed left when safe to do so, and return to the right side of the road.

Left turns with a stop

For children: Bikers should use a stop signal, dismount on the right side of the bike, walk across both intersections and remount the bike on the right side of the road.

For adults: Check for traffic from behind, signal, move near the center line, check for oncoming traffic, proceed left with the sign or signal, in accordance with traffic laws, and return to the right side of the road.

Stop for pedestrians, giving them the right-of-way.

Avoid hazards

  • If you see glass or some other hazard on the road ahead, check for traffic behind, point to the obstacle and maneuver around it without skidding, swerving or running over debris.
  • Avoid riding in wet weather and in the dark, if possible. Wear retro-reflective clothing and use a headlight if you must ride in the dark. Reduce your speed if it's raining. Carry change, or a cell phone so you can call someone to pick you up, if need be.
  • Avoid loose clothing or long coats that can catch in pedals or wheels. Leg clips or bands keep pants legs from tangling in chains.

Related Sites


Contact the Minnesota Safety Council at msc@minnesotasafetycouncil.org, or 651-291-9150/1-800-444-9150.
474 Concordia Avenue St. Paul Minnesota 55103 USA