Editorial: Time to share the road

A heads up to Kenai Peninsula motorists: While it’s been a chilly spring, the street sweepers have been doing their job, which means it is time to share the road with motorcyclists, bicyclists, runners, and walkers.

 

And a heads up to all those motorcyclists, bicyclists, runners and walkers out sharing the road: you also have a responsibility to make sure you are doing so safely.

Winter road conditions in Alaska demand drivers be alert and attentive at all times. But just because the ice has melted and daylight hours stretch from early morning to late at night, now is not the time to let down our guard. In fact, it’s time to be extra attentive, especially along Kalifornsky Beach Road and the Kenai Spur Highway, where the bike path and Unity Trail get heavy use all season.

Likewise, those out enjoying the central Peninsula by bike, in-line skates, or on foot, need to know — and follow — the rules of the road.

Bicyclists who ride on the roadway need to obey traffic laws, including stopping at red lights and signaling turns. Make sure your bike has the proper reflectors and lights. Be predictable — don’t weave on and off of the bike path, for example, or cut in front of traffic without looking. Make yourself visible. Neon colors are back in fashion, and they are a great way to help make sure everyone else can see you.

If you’re riding on the bike path, be aware that there’s rules of the road there, too. Pedestrians always have the right of way. Pay careful attention where the path crosses roads and driveways. Parents, if your child getting out on his or her bike for the first time this season, now is a good time for a refresher on safety rules.

Most importantly, whether you’re riding on the road, on the trail, or at the skate park, a kid or an adult, wear a properly fitted helmet.

For those using roads, sidewalks and paths on foot, many of the same rules apply. Be visible, look both ways, and be aware of and considerate to other users who might be moving a little faster or slower.

We hope the weather continues to improve, and long sunny days provide plenty of opportunity for exercise and recreation — and we hope everyone, visitors and residents alike, are able to do so safely.

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