QUESTION: A car has to stay 3 feet from a bicycle. Does a bicycle have to stay 3 feet from a pedestrian? Who enforces the regulations that the bicycles are supposed to follow?

ANSWER: Pedestrians always have the right of way in their encounters with either motorized vehicles or bicycles, but there is no law that specifically requires bicyclists keep a certain distance from pedestrians, Baton Rouge Police spokesman Cpl. Don Coppola Jr. tells us.

Of course, bicyclists are not allowed to ride on sidewalks, but they may ride near pedestrians who are either crossing the road or walking at the side of a road that doesn’t have a sidewalk.

Coppola adds that bicyclists are supposed to follow the same rules of the road that drivers of motorized vehicles follow, such as stopping at stop signs and red lights.

“They are considered a vehicle on the roadway,” he said.

And any law enforcement officer who witnesses a bicyclist violating those rules can issue a citation, Coppola says.

Inspection exemption

QUESTION: Do single-axle utility trailers (boat) still need state inspection stickers? How about double-axle trailers?

ANSWER: Sgt. Nick Manale, a spokesman for Louisiana State Police, says that under state law (R.S. 32:1311) all single-axle two-wheel trailers, boat trailers and tandem-axle trailers not used in commerce are exempt from inspection requirements.

Talk to us

Send your questions to Ask The Advocate, 10705 Rieger Road, Baton Rouge, LA 70810; or fax to Ask The Advocate, (225) 388-0371; or email