The city of Minneapolis has launched a bicycle safety campaign designed to educate people who ride bikes and drive cars on city streets.
A city analysis of collisions between bicycles and automobiles showed that riders and drivers are equally to blame for the crashes, said city bike and pedestrian planner Simon Blenski. However, he said, in cases where injuries occur, it's almost always the person on the bike who gets hurt.
When riders are at fault in a crash, he said, it's usually because they were not following traffic signs and signals.
"When drivers are at fault, it's primarily because they were failing to yield the right of way," Blenski said. "They weren't looking for bicyclists, so we're trying to get bicyclists to ride more predictably and follow the laws. We're trying to get drivers to start looking for bicyclists more."
Beyond putting themselves in danger by running red lights or stop signs, bicyclists who do so are breaking the law, Blenski said.
"It's actually a state statute -- bicyclists must follow all traffic control devices, just like any other road user -- whether you're walking or driving a car," he said. "Bicyclists have to follow rules just like everyone else."
Bicyclists are also required by law to use a headlight and rear reflector when riding at night, Blenski said.
The safety campaign, which is reminding bicyclists to obey signs and signals, features posters in bus shelters also includes a reminder for drivers to watch for bikes on the roads.
There were 290 bike-car crashes in Minneapolis in 2012, but no fatalities, Blenski said. One bicyclist has been killed so far this year.