The obvious answer to how to stop bicyclists from running stop signs is… remove the requirement for bicycles to stop at the sign.
Seriously, though, stop signs are a function of cars being low to the ground with limited visibility, hard to stop and hard to maneuver in an intersection. None of that is true for bicycles, which put the rider up high with unobstructed views and ultra-fast stopping and turning.
A bicycle entering a 4-way road stop has about as much need to stop as a car entering a four lane roundabout, virtually none although there are the occasional times when it’s necessary. And let’s be honest, the flow of not stopping (roundabouts) is significantly safer than stopping (intersections).
According to studies done by the Federal Highway Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, roundabouts resulted in a 40 percent reduction in pedestrian collisions, 37 percent reduction in overall collisions, 90 percent reduction in fatality crashes and 75 percent reduction in injury collisions.
90% reduction in fatality crashes when allowing people to roll into intersections instead of trying to stop them with a sign…
You can perhaps see why stop signs make about as much sense for road safety on bicycles as requiring car drivers to stuff a chamois in their pants for safety.
A “chamois” is a European mountain-goat-like animal, and the first chamois was made from actual chamois skin.
Also bicycles incur a massive cost to the rider when stopping without a need to be stopping.
Car drivers just empty their wallets and burn gallons of gas without a second thought while the cyclist often actually cares about wasted energy, ergo a big reason for being on a bicycle in the first place.
It comes to mind when reading the Colorado news that drivers are losing their mind when bicycles ride through an empty intersection without stopping.
“We’ve certainly seen some disgruntled drivers who think this is just going to cause chaos on our streets, and we just don’t think that aligns with reality,” Todd said of the new law. “The reality is that many bicyclists do this already. This is legalizing a common behavior. The bicyclists know it will be safer for them. Bicyclists can only proceed when they already have the right of way.”
Exactly. When you have right of way on a bicycle you use that right. Rolling is not a crime.
Car drivers nonetheless may go to absurd lengths to stoke fear about what could happen when bicycles are simply allowed to do what is sensible and right, which definitely comes out in the article.
“I can see a cyclist rolling up behind me as I begin to make a right turn and plowing into me, or I run over them as they cruise through the stop sign.”
This is the voice of someone who treats their vehicle as power and dominance where “right of way” feels to them like justification for killing others in their path, instead of operating with a duty of care.
No cyclist wants to plow into anything and likewise no driver should be thinking they will run over people.
If a cyclist is approaching a stop with a car already stopped, or if a cyclist is approaching a car about to make a right turn… the cyclist should NOT proceed (and in nearly 100% cases would not) because of the OBVIOUS harm to self and others in doing so. The concept of rolling through a stop on a bicycle is as simple as rolling on any road that is CLEARLY UNOBSTRUCTED. When any obstruction appears, bicyclists are not seeking some kind of special power over others in the way that car owners often do.