Why not make bicycle turn signals standard?


The minute I post this, I am sure someone will point out that there are bikes with turn signals available for purchase (probably for a small fortune). But, the other evening as I was bicycling home after a high school football game, I couldn’t figure out in my head why turn signals are not included as standard equipment on bicycles.

Granted, turn signals might be hard to see amid the flashing red and white beacons we use to traverse in the poor visibility, but I am sure that could be overcome with some ingenuity – amber or some other color to identify turn signals for instance (like the example in the photograph). It certainly has to be better than using hand signals in the dark – who’s gonna see those? Besides, I’ll bet that half the time, cyclists do not recall the proper hand signals, especially for right turn.

Source: portlandoregon.gov

Left and right turn signals at the tips of handle bars seems like the best option to me – sort of akin to the ones you now see on rear view mirrors of many car models these days. They could be powered by battery or better yet by the rider’s pedaling motion.

A second could be at the rear of the bike, but that could impede the use of saddle bags and the like. One other thought is the rear of the bike seat, but replacing seats could present re-connection issues.

So, there is my great brainstorm of the weekend. I would be curious to hear what other cyclists think of the idea. To me it seem like a no brainer and a great way to improve overall safety for cyclists and drivers alike.

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8 Responses to Why not make bicycle turn signals standard?

  1. Pingback: Why not make bicycle turn signals standard? | Panethos | Bicycle News Gator

  2. basil berchekas jr says:

    They should be required…


  3. silver price says:

    In most jurisdictions, bicycles must have functioning front and rear lights when ridden after dark. As some generator or dynamo -driven lamps only operate while moving, rear reflectors are frequently also mandatory. Since a moving bicycle makes little noise, some countries insist that bicycles have a warning bell for use when approaching pedestrians, equestrians, and other cyclists, though sometimes a car horn can be used when a 12 volt battery is available.


  4. JV says:

    Where do you put the signal? How much use is it when you have a baby carrier or a temporary load atop the rear rack? Mount it on the rack? But what if your rack itself is temporary or quick release? Where do you mount the switches? How to they integrate with a multiple hand-position handlebar? Is there an increased risk?

    Hand signals work perfectly fine, if you’re worried about being seen stitch some Scotchbrite to your gloves. If you don’t wear them get a couple extra reflective cuff straps and wear them as wristbands.

    Or take a look at something like this: http://blog.makezine.com/2008/06/23/led-turn-signal-bike-jack/


  5. Jenna says:

    I just did a project to add turning indicators, strobe light, brake lights, speedometer, and odometer to my bike. If you’re interested, you can check out my tutorial/project here – https://www.youtube.com/my_videos_edit?ns=1&video_id=Cw8ulMPKZUk 🙂


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