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Denver Agencies Offer Driver, Cyclist Safety Tips for National Bike to School Day

DENVER – As students from 11 Denver schools hit the streets on May 8 in celebration of National Bike to School Day, the Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE),  the Denver Police Department, and Denver Public Works are teaming up to remind all residents to stay safe and alert on our city’s streets.

Bicyclists from across the U.S. will join in celebrating National Bike to School Day on May 8. Bike to School events work to create safer routes for bicycling and walking, emphasizing the importance of physical activity among children and promoting cyclist and pedestrian safety.

DDPHE’s Safe Routes to School Program is partnering with Denver Public Schools, Denver Police, Denver Parks and Recreation, and Denver Public Works to promote Bike to School Day, with events taking place at the following schools:

  • Asbury Elementary School
  • Blessed Sacrament Parish School
  • Castro Elementary School
  • Denver Language School
  • Edison Elementary School
  • Highline Academy Charter School
  • Lincoln Elementary School
  • McKinley-Thatcher Elementary School
  • Smith Renaissance School
  • Stedman Elementary School
  • Steele Elementary School

 

Best practices for drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists include the following:

For Drivers:

  • Look out for pedestrians and bicyclists always. Safety is a shared responsibility.
  • Use extra caution when driving in hard-to-see conditions, such as nighttime or in bad weather.
  • Slow down and be prepared to stop when turning or otherwise entering a crosswalk.
  • Yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and stop well before the crosswalk to give other vehicles an opportunity to see the crossing pedestrians so they can stop, too.
  • Never pass vehicles stopped at a crosswalk.
  • Observe slower speed limits in school zones and in neighborhoods where children are present.
  • Be extra cautious when backing up — pedestrians or bicyclists can move into your path.
  • Look out your driver side window behind you to check for cyclists before opening your car door.

For Pedestrians:

  • Always cross the street at an intersection.
  • Obey the “walk/don’t walk” pedestrian signals. Don’t enter the crosswalk once the hand begins flashing
  • Use the “push to walk” button, where available. It adds pedestrian crossing time to the traffic signal.
  • Always stay alert. Don’t be a distracted walker or cyclist.
  • Never assume vehicles (cars, buses, bikes) see you. Look both ways before you cross the street.

For Bicyclists:

  • Follow the rules of the road.
  • Never assume vehicles (cars, buses) see you. Look both ways before you cross the street.
  • Always wear a properly fitting helmet.
  • Use hand signals when making turns or stopping on your bike.
  • Wear bright colors during the day, and always use reflectors and a bike light at night.

For more information about Walk to School Day, visit walkbiketoschool.org. To learn more about Safe Routes to School, visit denvergov.org/srts.  For more information on Denver’s Vision Zero program, please visit denvergov.org/visionzero.