The 2021 legislative session in Colorado kicked off on January 13

Under a modified COVID-schedule, legislators were sworn in on January 13 and the legislature immediately went on hiatus. They plan to return to the capitol on February 16 and, when they do, Bicycle Colorado will be there fighting for you, advocating for safety bills for bicyclists and other vulnerable road users.

 

This year, our primary focus in the legislature will be adopting the Safety Stop into the statewide transportation code. We’ll also be working with environmentally- and mobility-focused organizations to influence the shape of Colorado’s transportation budget bill throughout the session. As always, our top priorities will reflect the broad themes of our strategic plan, encouraging safer road behaviors, creating places to bike and expanding the bicycling movement and, above all, making sure all Coloradans can choose bicycling as a healthy choice for recreation and transportation.

 

We’ll update this page regularly with information about the 2021 legislative session, so be sure to check back. Together, with a unified voice, we can make a difference and continue to make Colorado the best place to ride a bike!

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The Colorado Safety Stop

What is the Safety Stop?

The Safety Stop creates a safer way for people on bikes to cross at intersections when they have the right of way. The maneuver allows people riding bicycles to:

  • treat stop signs as yield signs.
  • treat stop lights as stop signs.

The Safety Stop does not impact the current right-of-way whatsoever. Bicycles can proceed straight, right, or left at a reasonable speed of no more than 15 miles per hour only when the coast is clear.

Why make this legal statewide?

The Safety Stop has a number of benefits, including the fact that it:

  • is cost-neutral, safety-enhancing policy.
  • encourages people to ride for transportation, protecting and enhancing our air quality.
  • attracts tourism and increases livability.
  • allows police to focus on major infractions (e.g. reckless endangerment) rather than common behaviors.

Most importantly, it’s safer for bicyclists and motorists alike. Research shows that the Safety Stop:

  • reduces interactions between motorists and bicyclists in intersections.
  • reduces crashes in intersections.
  • increases the visibility of bicyclists in the intersection.
  • reduces the number of bicyclist-only injuries associated with starting and stopping on a bicycle.

Recent data out of Delaware, which legalized the maneuver at stop signs in 2017, shows a 23% decrease in crashes in intersections in the 30 months after adoption compared to the 30 months prior. The safety benefits are clear. Now more than ever, as Coloradans continue to discover and rediscover bicycling in record numbers, we need to pass the safety-enhancing legislation.

Additionally, adopting the safety stop decriminalizes a common-sense behavior for bicyclists, taking a potential crime off the books. This also frees up law enforcement resources to focus on bigger, more pressing issues. Conversations with law enforcement officials across the state indicate this is not a crime they currently enjoy focusing on.

Finally, Colorado’s current system for adopting the Safety Stop on a community-by-community basis creates a dangerous patchwork of places where this is and is not allowed. It is unrealistic to expect bicyclists to know where they can and cannot do this maneuver legally, and statewide adoption eliminates that confusion. Adoption statewide also signifies an important step in creating consistent, uniform bike laws across the state, which is essential for encouraging bicycling as a sensible, safe and sustainable form of transportation.

Want to get involved?

Make sure you are signed up to receive our Action Alerts by filling out the form below! We’ll reach out to you when your legislators need to hear from you.

Why now?

COVID-19 has created the biggest bike boom the world has ever seen. People are discovering and rediscovering bicycling in droves, as both:

  • a means of transportation that feels safer than public transportation or ride share services during a health crisis.
  • a healthy way to recreate, get outside, and take care of their physical and mental health when under stay-at-home, safer-at-home or protect-our-neighbors restrictions.

It is imperative that the State find ways to protect these new and experienced riders alike. The Safety Stop enhances safety for bicyclists and drivers, and does so at no cost to the State or taxpayers.

 

 

Research in favor of the Safety Stop

Where is the Safety Stop in place?

In Colorado:

  • Aspen
  • Berthoud
  • Breckenridge
  • Dillon
  • Englewood
  • Summit County
  • Thornton

Nationwide:

  • Arkansas – Adopted in 2019
  • Delaware – Stop as Yield in 2017
  • Idaho – 1982 (this maneuver is commonly called the Idaho Stop)
  • Oregon – Stop as Yield in 2019
  • Washington State – 2020

Efforts we’re following in 2021:

  • California
  • New York
  • Utah
Bolded communities above indicate communities that adopted after our 2018 law was enacted. 

Thank you for your advocacy! 

If you’d like to support our work, consider becoming a member or making a donation today. 

Testimonial

“We support Bicycle Colorado because the advocacy work they do has proven to be a strong and effective means of making Colorado one of the best places for cyclists to live.”

  • Jason and Patty Heinhorst
Become a Member
Bicycle Colorado
@BicycleColo

On 3/17 at 12 pm MDT, join our Education Team for a free Bicycle-Friendly Driver webinar! We'll cover laws, safe pr… https://t.co/nN3wvofTUY

At the Gran Fondo Moab on May 1, you'll ride the most spectacular mountain pass in the Manti-La Sals, the Loop Road… https://t.co/FuXDviN8OK

  • DON’T DELAY: We’re placing another order for #BicycleColorado masks made by our friends at @primalwear TOMORROW (5/14) at noon! Click the link in our bio to get yours now!
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We’re thrilled to see so many people out enjoying (and often rediscovering the joy of) riding a bike right now, and we’re asking ALL bicyclists to do their part to prevent the spread of #covid19 by wearing a mask or other face covering when out for a ride. Doing so keeps you, your loved ones, those around you, and all Coloradans safer while helping reduce stress on our medical system. If you still need a mask, click the link in our bio to pre-order one now and support our advocacy work! Thanks so much to everyone who has already purchased, and to @primalwear for supporting our efforts over the years. Ride on.
  • #BicycleColorado volunteers and staff members spent time today helping @denverurbangardens and @denverfoodrescue deliver “Grow a Garden” food boxes to home-bound families in Denver—via bike! Supporting our community on two wheels makes for a great way to spend a sunny day. Many thanks to our friends @ddchen47, David M., and @juggernautcargo for your help! Head to denverfoodrescue.org or dug.org to learn more about these great local organizations. #rideyourbike
  • Tonight the #BicycleColorado team celebrated Stacey, our outgoing Development Director, with a virtual happy hour. Stacey has been an absolute rockstar for BC. We’re sad to see her leave, but thrilled for her as she heads out on a new adventure (hopefully in the #BikeAdvocacy space!) in North Carolina. Please join us in wishing her well!