Iowa Bikes


Live Tabs

Sharing Iowa's roads with bicycles

  • Bicycles have a right to use Iowa's roads.
  • Bicyclists must follow the same rules of the road as motorists.

Safety tips for motorists

  • Do not honk your horn at bicyclists.
    They may be startled and lose control.
  • Use extra caution when passing bicycles.
    Move entirely into the left lane; on a two-lane road, do not pass a bicycle if oncoming traffic is near.
  • Bicyclists might swerve to avoid road hazards.
    Common road hazards for bicyclists are potholes, debris, drainage grates, railroad tracks and narrow bridges.
  • Be careful when opening your vehicle door.
    Road widths often force bicyclists to ride close to parked vehicles where they may be injured by an opening door.
  • When in doubt, yield to bicycles.

Safety tips for bicyclists

  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Ride on the right.
    Ride in the right lane, except when passing another vehicle, preparing for a left turn, or avoiding hazards.
  • Never ride against traffic.
    Always ride with the flow of traffic.
  • Obey traffic signs and signals.
    Use hand signals to advise motorists you plan to turn, change lanes or stop.
  • Make eye contact with motorists.
    Never assume a motorist sees you or that you have the right-of-way. Expect the unexpected such as: parked vehicles pulling into traffic; vehicle doors opening into your path; and debris on the road.
  • At night use a headlight, taillight and reflectors.

Rules for Iowa's off-road trails




  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Yield to pedestrians and skaters.
  • Give audible warning when passing other trail users. A friendly greeting like, “Hello, passing on your left,” or ringing a bell is considerate.
  • Ride at a safe speed. Slow down and form a single file in congested areas, reduced visibility or other hazardous conditions.
  • Be mindful of all other trail users and young children on the trail as their actions could be unpredictable.

Pedestrians and skaters

  • Use the right side of the trail, except when otherwise designated.
  • Watch out for other trail users.
  • Listen for audible signals and allow faster trail users to pass safely.

All trail users

  • Show courtesy to others.
  • Use the right side of the trail, except when otherwise designated.
  • Always pass on the left.
  • Respect the rights of property owners.
  • Keep pets on a leash and remove pet feces from trail.
  • Travel with a buddy in case of an emergency.
  • Always pass on the left.
  • Obey and respect all trail rules, hours, and traffic signs.
  • Move out of other users' way while taking a break or looking at a scenic view.
  • Keep children close by and teach them to be courteous to trail users.
  • Be considerate with your smartphone.

Educational materials




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