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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

The Yucatán state government publishes new traffic rules for cyclists

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Carlos Rosado van der Gracht
Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway. Sign up for the Yucatán Roundup, a free newsletter, which delivers the week's top headlines every Monday.
Cyclists will now be subject to many of the same rules which govern the operation of motor vehicles. Photo: Courtesy

A new set of rules outlining the rights and obligations of cyclists in Yucatán has been published online

According to state authorities, the new rules are designed to protect the safety of cyclists, motorists and pedestrians alike. 

Under these new rules, cyclists are obliged to respect the indications of authorities such as traffic officers and obey all signage. 

The rule has been made explicit to cyclists after motorists have long complained that people on bicycles often ignore traffic signs and conduct themselves in a reckless manner. 

Cyclists must also now keep to lanes designed for their use and obey the direction of traffic. This means that cyclists will not be permitted to cycle on sidewalks, except for children under 8. 

Earlier: A confused public is driven mad by Mérida’s new bike lanes

It is also now explicitly illegal to operate a bicycle when under the influence of alcohol or any other substance that may impair judgment. 

Cyclists will only be allowed to carry one additional passenger and are prohibited from hanging on to motor vehicles as a means to build up speed. 

The new rules also do away with some previous requirements. For example, cyclists are now no longer obliged to wear reflective vests or equip their bicycles with front facing lights.

The rulebook distinguishes between two types of bicycle lanes. Those which are delineated only with paint are referred to as ciclocarriles, and those that are enclosed by physical boundaries are called ciclovías. However, the use of both is mandated only for vehicles that use human propulsion. This detail is interesting as any person using a human-powered vehicle, such as a skateboard, could be allowed to use these lanes.

Yellow parallel lines indicate spaces where a cyclist should be given the right of way while parking spaces are enclosed in white.

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