Cycling in Kentucky cities like Louisville and Lexington has increased in popularity in the last couple of decades. This trend is happening all around the country as cities, counties and states are looking for ways to reduce dependence on motor vehicles to ease traffic congestion and increase safety.
In Kentucky, riding a bicycle is not allowed on the states interstate highways. Across the country, 19 states have some to unlimited access to freeways for bicycles while the other 31 prohibit non-motorized vehicles on their freeways.
Purpose of Restrictions
The reason is, of course, safety. High speed coupled with high volume puts cyclists and motorists at risk. In the states that allow bicycles, the reason is to allow access to cyclists in areas that are underserved with traditional roads. For these states, it typically creates a system where all freeways in an around high-population areas but allow them in rural and remote areas.
Kentucky Highways and Bicycles
While riding on Kentucky’s interstates is prohibited, In Kentucky, riding a bicycle on most of the states highways is legal. A bicycle is considered a vehicle for traffic codes and is allowed where a car is unless prohibited. This means that on many of the state’s highways, a cyclist is allowed to travel, but is restricted to riding on the shoulder.
At times, highways join with freeways and then diverge. In these cases, if a cyclist is riding on a highway that merges with an interstate highway or freeway, then the cyclist is required to exit.