New bicycle plans implemented UPDATE July 17 2012

Rehoboth Beach takes initiative to improve safety on Rehoboth Avenue

Editorial  Cape Gazette  July 17

Enforce rules of the road to promote safety

he death of a cyclist on Route 1 out­side Rehoboth Beach brings into fo­cus the dangers cyclists face riding on a busy divided highway.

There's no question that cyclists are here, and they have the right to ride on Route 1.

The cyclist who was killed, Russ Henman, was riding responsibly, with lights on the front and back of his bike.

He was riding in the proper direction and was obeying traffic signs.

Unlike Henman, many who ride on Route 1 appear to court danger: their bicycles have no lights; they wear no helmets, and their clothing is dark and unreflective. Perhaps most danger­ous of all, cyclists too often ride against traffic – extremely dangerous on divided Route 1 be­cause motorists are not anticipating traffic from the right.

Active police enforcement of the rules of the road – for motorists and cyclists – is critical to raising awareness of these dangers.

The City of Rehoboth Beach has taken the initiative to recognize the danger of riding on busy Rehoboth Avenue. New street signs and painted share-the-road “sharrows” direct cy­clists off the avenue and onto quieter streets.

City officials have also developed an attractive new map to help cyclists find safe routes and new bicycle parking stations.

These are inexpensive, practical steps that help everyone share the roads. State officials should take inspiration: Mark bike pathways on Route 1 with fluorescent paint, especially at in­tersections, so turning traffic is alert to cyclists riding straight through the intersection. Devel­op preferred routes to direct cyclists away from the most dangerous intersections.

Bicycles are here. Health and environmental concerns are likely to inspire more people to ride the roads year round.

Route 1 will never be a good place to ride, but people who ride by necessity are going to use it.

Safety for everyone requires actively enforc­ing the rules of the road while also implement­ing proactive measures to promote cycling safety.

Test safety arrows down in Rehoboth

By Ryan Mavity | Jun 11, 2012
Cape Gazette
Photo by: Ryan Mavity

Rehoboth Beach — Four bicycle-safety arrows, referred to as “sharrows,” have been painted on streets in Rehoboth Beach.

The sharrows have been placed at four intersections:

• State Road and Hickman Street

• Hickman and Scarborough Avenue

• Henlopen Avenue and Grove Street

• Sussex and Fourth streets.

The sharrows, intended to alert motorists to share the road with bicycles, are a test;  if successful, city officials could paint more streets.  Put down June 5, the sharrows were called for in the city’s still-in-progress bicycle/pedestrian master plan.

Besides sharrows, the city is implementing other plan recommendations this year, including a citywide bicycle map, signs, two new bicycle parking stations at First Street and Baltimore Avenue and educational initiatives