Increased safety out on the roads for Columbus cyclists - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Increased safety out on the roads for Columbus cyclists

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -

Three new sensors are scheduled to be planted underground at busy intersections to make crossing the street easier for cyclists.

With warm weather drawing thousands of bicyclists to the streets of Columbus, city officials are looking to boost traffic safety measures.

Bruce Sellers, a bike rider and sales representative at Ride on Bikes, said, "It's healthy it's fun."

With spring-like weather spreading across the valley, workers at the Ride on Bikes store in Columbus see hundreds of enthusiasts ready to ride.

Byron Thornton, part owner of Ride on Bikes, said, "As soon as it gets warm, it's like a switch comes on, everybody comes in the shop it's amazing to me how busy we get once the weather gets nice like this."

With a spike in bikes out and about, come serious safety concerns.

Ever get the feeling you're being watched? Well if a bike is how you get around town, you might hope that answer is yes.

Last fall the city of Columbus installed half a dozen camera's at intersections that can detect when a cyclist is waiting at a light.

Doc Dorsey, Traffic Engineering Manager for the City of Columbus, said,  "We don't want the bicycles to try to go across the intersection when the light's red."

Something that happens sometimes when riders don't get picked up by traditional sensors that tell the light to change.

"We want them to know that if they pull up to that point at the intersection, that eventually the light will turn green for them to go through the intersection, and we don't want them to take a risk to try to cross a light when it's red," Dorsey said.

Now city officials plan on installing three new sensors underground to continue their efforts.

Bruce Sellers, who says he's been riding a bike to work for more than three decades, is happy about recent safety measures and hopes the momentum continues, "I'm thrilled, but I want more."

The new sensors are scheduled to be installed down 14th Street. Cycling experts encourage riders to wear their helmets, follow vehicle traffic laws, and ride with lights on at night for added safety.

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