Whether you are riding a bike, driving or walking, we want you to get where you are going safely. By taking basic precautions and being aware of one’s surroundings, the likelihood of an unnecessary collision can be dramatically reduced. The City of New Haven monitors citizens’ concerns regarding traffic safety in order to make improvements through the SeeClickFix website at http://seeclickfix.com/new-haven#welcome.
Motorists need to be vigilant of pedestrians and bicyclists. Watch for cyclists on the road and remember to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks. Pedestrians and bicyclists also need to be vigilant of motorists. Even the brightest, high visibility clothing becomes hard to see in low-light conditions, so make sure your riding apparel has plenty of reflective areas. Although motorists have more responsibility under the law when operating a motor vehicle, pedestrians and bicyclists have much more at stake if struck by a motor vehicle. Please be careful.
As a pedestrian, it is your responsibility to make yourself visible and avoid dangerous behavior and situations. It is important to realize that vehicles may not always stop.
Same road, same rules. Follow signs, obey traffic signals, ride with traffic and use lights at night. Don’t bike on sidewalks as it against the law. If you need to be on the sidewalk to get to your location, dismount and walk your bike until you can use the road again.
Connecticut law requires that anyone under the age of 16 to wear a helmet while riding a bicycle. For those over the age of 16, helmets can prevent serious head trauma, the primary cause of death and disabling injuries. Helmets can also improve rider visibility. It is also recommended that those operating scooters wear helmets to prevent serious injuries. There are lots of helmet colors and styles to choose from. A bright color or white helmet is highly recommended as it helps reflect the sun’s heat while increasing your visibility.
- Buckle up – every trip, every time.
- Be aware of what other drivers around you are doing and always expect the unexpected.
- Share the road. Look out for motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians.
- Do not text and drive, or even touch your phone while driving.
- Slow down and obey all posted speed limits. The speed limit in the City of New Haven is 25 MPH.
For more information, visit the Traffic Safety Committee’s page.
Most bicycle crashes occur at driveways or intersections. Whether you are walking, biking, or using a scooter, before you enter any street or intersection, check for traffic. Always look left, right, and left again, before proceeding into the intersection.
Never text, listen to music or use anything that distracts you by taking your eyes, ears or full attention off the road and traffic.
Unlike those who are in vehicles, you will not be heard, and are fully reliant on being seen. Wear clothes that make you more visible. Wearing neon, fluorescent or other bright colors helps you be easily seen by motorists. By law, a cyclist who is riding anytime between dusk and dawn must have a working white headlight, as well as a white reflector on the front of the bicycle. Although the law only requires a red reflector on the back of your bike, using a high visibility flashing light is highly recommended.
E-Bikes and Scooters
Riders of electric bicycles (e-bikes), electric scooters (e-scooters) and manual scooters must follow all the regulations established for traditional bicycles. Riders must comply with all the laws that apply to vehicles, such as obeying traffic signals and following the direction of traffic.
- Always wear a helmet. Other protective gear such as wrist guards, knee, elbow pads, and close-toed shoes are also recommended.
- Be mindful of surrounding traffic and obey all traffic signals. E-scooters are prohibited on sidewalks.
- Watch for bumps, cracks, and potholes that could result in a loss of balance and increase the risk falling. Scooters are made for smooth, even surfaces. If it is raining or the ground is wet, use caution when braking or making turns.
- Avoid headphones or earbuds while riding to ensure awareness of vehicles and pedestrians.