Take the Hi Road is a cycling and driving etiquette campaign that encourages Billings residents to practice empathy, lawfulness, and respect when traveling on the road.


 Utility Bill Insert

utility bill copy

Does this flyer look familiar? You may have seen it in your water bill. This summer, Billings TrailNet, the Billings Department of Public Works, and the Billings Planning Department are partnering to challenge you to get out on the trails. Ready to take the challenge but not sure where to start? No worries! We have resources to help you navigate walking or rolling on city streets and the trail system.

 

At bikebillings.com, you can find a variety of tips for riding and walking in Billings including ideas specific to families, seniors, and women.

 

And here, at billingstrailnet.org, you can find more information about “Take the Hi Road,” a cycling and driving etiquette campaign designed to promote courtesy, lawfulness, and respect among all road users. While you’re here, take a few minutes and learn more about Billings TrailNet and our vision of a complete, community wide trail system in Billings. Take the Hi Road is brought to you through a partnership between Billings TrailNet and the City of Billings Public Works Department. Visit www.ci.billings.mt.us/publicworks for any questions you may have about city streets, engineering, environmental affairs, and more.

Tips for People Biking and People Driving

Be Visible

  • When biking at night, use a white front light and a red rear light
  • Wear light-colored or reflective clothing while riding at night
  • Always use your headlights when riding or driving at night

Almost 80% of drivers in Billings make a note to be extra careful until they pass a person riding a bike.

 

Be Predictable 2 Be Predictable

People riding bicycles should:

  • Signal their intentions to turn or stop
  • Ride in a straight line; and not weave in and out of parked cars
  • Follow the same laws as drivers
  • Turn from the correct lane. To turn left, turn from the left-most lane and signal your turn by pointing left. To turn right, turn from right most lane and signal your turn by pointing right (rather than using a bent left arm, which can be confused as a wave).
  • Never turn from the middle lane.

People driving cars should:

  • Wait for a bicyclist to pass before they turn across the rider’s path.
  • Expect that someone may be riding a bicycle in their blind spot, so be sure to look carefully before turning or opening their door when parallel parking.
  • Never honk or startle a bicyclist.

More than 90% of drivers in Billings believe it is very important for people riding bikes to use turn and stop signals to let them know what they intend to do.

Be Lawful

People riding bicycles must:

  • Stop at stop signs and lights
  • Ride with the flow of traffic
  • Follow the same laws as cars do while riding in a lane (signaling, riding single file)
  • Use lights at night

People driving cars must:

  • Not park or drive in a bike lane
  • Share the lane with bicyclists where there is no designated bike lane
  • Understand that “sharrows” are an advisory to motorists that a bicyclist may use a full lane when there is not enough space to pass

 

More than 90% of drivers in Billings know that bicyclists are not allowed to ride on sidewalks downtown.

Be Courteous 2Be Courteous

Tips for people riding bicycles:

  • Ride single file when riding in a group on two-lane roads, such as the Molt Road
  • Plan routes on lower-volume, slower-speed streets whenever possible
  • Wave a “thank you” when another road user is courteous

Tips for people driving cars:

  • Understand that people on bikes have the right to use the full lane on narrow streets like Lewis Ave., where there is a sharrow (shared lane marking).
  • Look for people walking, running, biking, or wheelchairing before pulling out of a driveway
  • Give wheelchair users, bicyclists and pedestrians room and time to cross a crosswalk.
  • Give four feet of space when passing a bicyclist on the road.

Almost 90% of drivers in Billings slow down and wait for a bicyclist to pass when they want to turn across a bike lane.

Be Understanding

Tips for people riding bicycles:

  • When riding in a group, move to single file to let cars pass
  • People riding bikes are noticeable: we have a responsibility to everyone to honor the law

Tips for people driving cars:

  • Stop at road crossings such as the one at Stewart Park Trail, to allow people using any type of nonmotorized transportation to cross the street. If the people seem hesitant to cross, understand that it may be difficult to see across the lane to determine if drivers in the other lane are going to stop.
  • Many families use the trail system so be especially careful when you come to a trail crossing
  • Children often ride unpredictably so be extra alert and careful when passing a child on a bike
  • Bicyclists sometimes ride in the middle of a traffic lane, even when there is a bike lane. There may be hazards in the bike lane such as gravel, broken glass or large drains.

More than 80% of drivers in Billings believe that someone riding a bicycle deserves the same amount of consideration as someone walking.