Bike lanes in Holts Summit promote cyclist safety

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HOLTS SUMMIT- New bike lines were painted in Holts Summit Thursday to make cycling safer and more accessible.

The sharrows, or shared-lane markings, were painted along South Summit Drive from the Holts Summit Fire Protection District building all the way to Highway 54, a stretch of about 3 miles. Each of the sharrows is painted approximately 500 feet apart.

The bike lanes are part of Healthy Schools, Healthy Communities' efforts to get more cyclists on the road through shared bike lanes.

Roberta Licklider, a member of the Holts Summit community, has ridden her bike on South Summit Drive for more than 30 years.

"I had a cart to pull my kids, we rode up and down the road quite a bit," Licklider said.

She said since she's lived near the road, she's seen car traffic slowly increase, which she says may drive bikers away.

"It's much busier now than it was 31 years ago," Licklider said. "Now that they're there, people will see them and be more alert for bikers." 

Having the new sharrows on South Summit Drive make Licklider feel better about pedaling up and down the hilly road.

"I ride my bike quite a bit anyway, but it would add another comfort to my riding a bike," Licklider said.

According to the most recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 818 pedalcyclists were killed in 2015 by motor vehicles, 12.2 percent from 2014. The NHTSA has several tips for bikers and drivers on their website on how to avoid crashes.

Drivers

  • Yield to bicyclists as you would motorists
  • Give cyclists room, don't pass too closely
  • Obey the speed limit

Bicyclists

  • Ride predictably
  • Avoid sidewalk riding
  • Ride defensively
  • Ride a bike that fits you and wear appropriate equipment (helmet, reflective clothing, front and rear lights)

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