As of January 1, 2020, Oregon will have a new stop as yield law for bicycle riders. The new stop as yield law allows bicyclists to treat stop signs as yield signs, a practice commonly known as an “Idaho stop.” The Idaho stop has been legal in its eponymous state since 1982. In Oregon, Senate Bill 998 was approved in June 2019 by the state legislature and signed into law in August 2019 for implementation in 2020.
Proponents of the new stop as yield law believe that it adds convenience for Oregon bicyclists without compromising safety. Unlike automobile drivers, bikers have broad angles of peripheral vision and are not encumbered by blind spots caused by pillars. Ideally, the new law gives riders additional freedom without increasing the chance of a bicycle accident.
What are Oregon Stop as Yield Law Rules?
Under the new law, bicycle riders will be able to do the following after yielding at a stop sign:
- Proceed through the intersection
- Make a right or left turn into a two-way street
- Make a right or left turn into a one-way street in the direction of traffic upon the one-way street
Naturally, bicyclists still have to obey other traffic laws while following the new Oregon stop as yield laws. The following actions are traffic violations that could occur after yielding at a stop sign:
- Failing to yield the right of way to traffic lawfully within the intersection or approaching so close as to constitute an immediate hazard
- Disobeying the directions of a police officer or flagger, as defined in ORS 811.230
- Failing to exercise care to avoid an accident
- Failing to yield the right of way to a pedestrian in an intersection or crosswalk under
- ORS 811.028
New Law, Old Habits
While the Idaho stop law seems like a great thing for bicyclists, extra caution must be used—especially during the first few months of the law’s implementation. Bike riders need to get into the habit of treating stop signs as yields, making quick and clear decisions. Motorists may or may not be aware of the new law and could be unprepared when they see a bicyclist go by a stop sign. Inaction, surprise, and old habits could lead to tragic accidents.
Contact a Oregon Bicycle Accident Lawyer
The lawyers at Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys encourage all bicycle riders, drivers, and pedestrians to be aware of the new stop as yield law and be especially cautious in its infancy. While the new law grants more freedom to bikers, it will only work if everyone is familiar with the rules and is mindful of others’ safety.
Should you get into a bicycle accident in Oregon for any reason, contact us as soon as possible. Our dedicated team of legal professionals is available to assist you 24/7. You can contact us by phone at 844-977-1900 or through the Internet via our online form and LiveChat features.