Cars & Bikes Share The Road For HHH Training

As the Hotter 'N Hell Hundred is fast approaching and cyclists are out on Texoma streets training, motorists and cyclists must share the road.

"Cyclists do have a right to the road," said the Director of Cycling at Midwestern State University Charlie Zamastil.  "I get the comment a lot, 'Get on the sidewalk!' And that's dangerous, the sidewalk is for walking."

It is also illegal for cyclists to ride on the sidewalk. Texas state law classifies bicycles along with cars, so cyclists must obey the same rules of the road.

Therefore, cyclists can ride in the right-hand lane of the road, as long as there are no more than two riding next to one another.

"But why not use the six-foot-wide shoulder that you have on roads like 79," said Zamastil. "So don't be over the white line, if you can avoid it." Zamastil added that sometimes cyclists can not ride in the available shoulder, in order to avoid getting flat tires from glass and gravel.

People on bicycles must also stop at red lights and signal, with their hands, when making a turn. "Motorists need to be aware, sometimes you may need to wait a little bit if (cyclists are) making a left turn and they're blocking the left lane, you wait your turn, just as if there was a car in front of you," said Zamastil.

Zamastil also reminded riders to wear a helmet and make sure they always know what is going on around them.  "You don't want to ride with headphones. I know it's very boring to ride by yourself for four hours or whatever it takes, (but) you need to be aware of what's going on, so skip the headphones," said Zamastil.

Christina Myers