FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- New legislation, effective tomorrow (July 1), signed by Governor Asa Hutchinson aims to promote bicyclist safety across the state of Arkansas.
As the law stands now, bicyclists follow the same rules as vehicles when approaching stop lights and stop signs. Starting tomorrow (July 1), bicyclists will treat stop lights as stop signs and stop signs as yield signs under the new legislation.
Spike Manlike, manager of the Phat Tire Bicycle Shop in Fayetteville, said the new legislation allows bicyclists to move out of harm's way when passing through dangerous intersections more quickly.
“If you can roll through the intersection, you can get out of the way,” Manlike said. “If you consider the weight of a bicycle compared to a car, the best thing about the law is you can get out of the way. There is no altercation in any way and nobody has to take any more risk than they have to.”
While many riders agree that the law could be beneficial, Shawn Kenyon cycles to school and said she fears the law might offer too much freedom at stop lights.
“As far as stop signs, I think it makes a lot of sense because it doesn’t make a lot of sense for bikers to stop, but at stoplights, I sort of have mixed feelings about it,” Kenyon said.
Kenyon and Manlike both agree a law that aims to keep bicyclists safe is a step in the right direction for the state of Arkansas
Gov. Hutchinson signed the legislation in April.