Aurora Bicycle Law

Aurora does not have its own specific municipal code regulations concerning bicycle operation on its public roadways choosing instead to follow the provisions of the Colorado Model Traffic Code (2010).

Rules for Bicycles in Aurora, Colorado

1007. – Driving on roadways laned for traffic.
1008.5. – Crowding or threatening bicyclist.
1003. – Overtaking a vehicle on the left.

1007. Driving on roadways laned for traffic.

(1) Whenever any roadway has been divided into two or more clearly marked lanes for traffic, the following rules in addition to all others consistent with this section shall apply:

(a) A vehicle shall be driven as nearly as practicable entirely within a single lane and shall not be moved from such lane until the driver has first ascertained that such movement can be made with safety.

(b) Upon a roadway which is divided into three lanes and provides for two-way movement of traffic, a vehicle shall not be driven in the center lane except when overtaking and passing another vehicle traveling in the same direction where the roadway is clearly visible and such center lane is clear of traffic within a safe distance, or in preparation for a left turn, or where such center lane is at the time allocated exclusively to the traffic moving in the direction the vehicle is proceeding and is designated by official traffic control devices to give notice of such allocation. Under no condition shall an attempt be made to pass upon the shoulder or any portion of the roadway remaining to the right of the indicated right-hand traffic lane.

(c) Official traffic control devices may be erected directing specified traffic to use a designated lane or designating those lanes to be used by traffic moving in a particular direction regardless of the center of the roadway, and drivers of vehicles shall obey the directions of every such device.

(d) Official traffic control devices may be installed prohibiting the changing of lanes on sections of roadway, and drivers of vehicles shall obey the directions of every such device.

(2) Any person who violates any provision of this section commits a class A traffic infraction.

This code specifies that a motorist must first make sure that it is safe for them to change lanes before moving over.

1008.5. Crowding or threatening bicyclist.

(1) The driver of a motor vehicle shall not, in a careless and imprudent manner, drive the vehicle unnecessarily close to, toward, or near a bicyclist.

(2) Any person who violates subsection (1) of this section commits careless driving as described in section 1402.

This code section realizes the importance of a motorist giving safe clearance to a surrounding cyclist. Implicitly, it realizes that such threatening behavior may cause a cyclist to take sudden avoidance maneuvers that may result in a loss of control of the bike. This is a frequent regulation we like to cite for imposing liability when there has not been an actual impact but, rather, the vehicle caused the bike to crash in avoiding an impact.

1003. Overtaking a vehicle on the left.

(1) The following rules shall govern the overtaking and passing of vehicles proceeding in the same direction, subject to the limitations, exceptions, and special rules stated in this section and sections 1004 to 1008:

(a) The driver of a vehicle overtaking another vehicle proceeding in the same direction shall pass to the left of the vehicle at a safe distance and shall not again drive to the right side of the roadway until safely clear of the overtaken vehicle.

(b) The driver of a motor vehicle overtaking a bicyclist proceeding in the same direction shall allow the bicyclist at least a three-foot separation between the right side of the driver’s vehicle, including all mirrors or other projections, and the left side of the bicyclist at all times.

(c) Except when overtaking and passing on the right is permitted, the driver of an overtaken vehicle shall give way to the right in favor of the overtaking vehicle on audible signal and shall not increase the speed of the driver’s vehicle until completely passed by the overtaking vehicle.

(2) Any person who violates any provision of this section commits a class A traffic infraction.

Our personal favorite…. This rule imposes the duty to avoid near misses upon the motorist – not the cyclist.