For more information on how to ride safely, check out :
Washington State Department of Transportation: http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/bike/
Bicycle Related Laws
Which traffic laws apply to bicyclists?
When ridden on any roadway, a bicycle rider has all of the rights and responsibilities of any vehicle. (RCW 46.61.755). Unless bicycles are specifically excluded, all traffic laws apply to bicycles. All violations are subject to issuance of an infraction.
Are children required to comply with bicycle traffic laws?
Bicyclists of all ages are required to follow the same traffic laws and may be cited for violations. Parents or guardians may be held responsible for a child's violation. (RCW 46-61.700) A parent or guardian shall not knowingly permit bicycle traffic safety violations by their ward (RCW 46.61.700).
Can I carry something in my hands while riding a bicycle?
As long as you can keep one hand on the handlebars and maintain control of the bicycle, you can carry things in your other hand. (RCW 46.61.775)
If there is a bike path adjacent to a roadway, do I have to ride on the bike path or can I ride on the roadway?
It is your choice. Sometimes a fast rider may want to ride on the roadway if the path is too crowded.
It sounds like bicycles are treated just like cars by the law, right?
Right! A "vehicle" is defines in RCW 46.04.670 as "every device capable of being moved upon a public highway..., including bicycles."
May bicyclists ride side by side?
Yes. They may not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles. (RCW 46.61.770.2)
Should bicyclists ride with the flow of traffic or facing traffic?
Bicycles are required to be ridden with the flow of traffic at all times. (RCW 46.61.100)
Riding against the flow of traffic is one of the leading causes of bicycle/automobile collisions
What equipment is required on bicycles being ridden at night?
A white front light and a red rear reflector are required. (RCW 16.61.780)
In addition, a red lamp may be used on the rear of the bicycle. A brake or brakes capable of making the wheels skid on clean, dry, level pavement is required at all times.
Where in the traffic lane should a bicyclist ride?
That depends on the number and types of lanes as well as the traffic in the area.