For the past 10 months we’ve lived in a state where it’s legal to roll through stop signs and flashing red signals if you’re on a bicycle. It took us 13 years, but due to the always unstoppable combination of dedicated activists and willing politicians, we were finally able to get it done.
And of course, despite all the fear-mongering and rhetoric, the sky has not fallen and we haven’t heard anything bad about the new law since it went into effect.
Now that it’s here to stay and no longer a controversial idea, the Oregon Department of Transportation has added stop-as-yield (AKA Idaho Stop) to their educational and marketing portfolio.
Today ODOT released a video explaining how the new law works. For a state DOT that’s not exactly well-versed in the ways of cycling, it’s actually pretty good. ODOT has the pitch down pat and explains the law like this:
“It allows a person riding a bike to keep some momentum at an intersection while checking for oncoming traffic… This rolling stop helps make the ride more efficient and improves the flow of traffic.”
This is a nice effort from ODOT. For a bit more expanded explanation of why it makes sense for bicycle riders to yield at intersections, I still highly recommend Portlander Spencer Boomhower’s video from 2009 (which has been viewed over 211,000 times!).
— Jonathan Maus: (503) 706-8804, @jonathan_maus on Twitter and firstname.lastname@example.org
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