Guest Writer – Sara Stieben, Hadfield Stieben Doutt, LLC
Did you know that there is a new law in Colorado known as the Colorado Safety Stop law? The law allows for cyclists 15 years and older to treat a stop sign as a yield sign and to treat stop lights as stop signs- meaning the cyclist need not wait for the red light to cycle to green before proceeding through the intersection. As with every law, there are exceptions and defined terms which govern certain scenarios. We encourage you to review the newly minted law here: https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb22-1028
While the new law codifies an existing practice followed by most cyclists, cyclists should remain vigilant in following the new law as educating motorists of the new law and its intricacies is expected to take some time. What can you do as a cyclist to stay safe while the public gets “up to speed” on the Colorado Safety Stop Law?
- Educate yourself on the new law by reading its text and considering how it applies to your daily route;
- Remain vigilant and assume for the next several months that motorists may not be educated on the change in the law, and;
- When in doubt yield the right of way to avoid a collision- it is still your responsibility to maintain a proper lookout when entering an intersection.
Fellow cyclists, we can work together to educate friends and family to ensure that all are safe on the Colorado roads.
Sara Stieben is an avid cyclist and a partner at the law firm of Hadfield Stieben Doutt, LLC. She previously served as board member on the Fort Collins Bike Co-op, and she also manages HSD Law’s corporate sponsorship of Sugar Beets Cycling.