Posted by

Tips for commercial drivers and people who bike

Below, get tips about trucks, buses, and other big vehicles sharing the road with bicycles, year-round. In addition, this post includes related tips for the annual Monterey Car Week / Pebble Beach Automotive Week.
Help prevent collisions. Share the four brochures below, providing tips—in English and Spanish— for drivers of large vehicles and for people who bike.
Although these four brochures were created for Santa Cruz, they are also relevant for Monterey County or anywhere.

Drivers, be aware that in all of California, the Three Feet for Safety Act is the law—not only in school zones but elsewhere too; click here to read the law, California Vehicle Code 21760. The brochures provided below were created before Three Feet for Safety became CA law. Note that while brochures 1 and 2 for commercial drivers simply state “Provide adequate space” (with three feet now required by law), brochures 3 and 4 for people who bike go further, stating that “Five to ten feet is recommended.” Additional update: California Assembly Bill 1909 effective January 1, 2023, amends CA Vehicle Code Section 21760 to now further require drivers of motor vehicles to change lanes when passing someone on a bicycle whenever feasible, just as they would if passing a car. See details, plus other bike-related provisions of AB 1909:

  1. For people who drive commercial vehicles, i.e., large trucks and buses; in English: 
  2. Para los conductores de vehiculos comerciales, en español: “información sobre la seguridad de los ciclistas para los conductores de vehículos comerciales
  3. For people who bike; in English: “Sharing the Road Safely with Trucks and Buses”
  4. Para ciclistas; en español: compartiendo las calles de manera segura con camiones y autobuses”
Year-round, you’ll see farm equipment and produce trucks operating in the Salad Bowl of America—the Salinas Valley—and other farms. Sometimes you’ll see big equipment because of fire fighting. Add in Monterey-Salinas Transit as as well as tourism buses and other large recreational vehicles, and you can see why these tips can help keep you and those around you safer.

Dealing with Gridlock” tips from Bike East Bay include info for people who bike and those who drive. Note that just as brochures 3-4 above advise, Bike East Bay’s tips remind too: “Do not pass to the right of buses, trucks, or other heavy vehicles at intersections!”

Car culture and bicycle culture sometimes seem at odds. Other times, such as the American Legion Lowrider Bike Show and Deadend Magazine’s Burrito Bike Rides, the two come together to maximize their fun. Few people live a car-free life; most of us bike-and-ride rather than bike exclusively. Here’s to harmony and sharing the road.

Monterey Car Week, including Concours d’Elegance and more

Monterey County’s annual Car Week —including Pebble Beach Automotive Week events ( and culminating with the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance—brings lots of big rigs hauling cars as well as large tourism buses carrying people.

It makes sense that many people enjoy the Concours d’Elegance and other Pebble Beach Automotive Week / Monterey Car Week events. Attendees provide a boost to the local economy and local charities, and they also bring a unique experience of car culture that’s appreciated by many locals and visitors every August.

Unfortunately, the scale tips in a far less positive direction with regard to environmental impact of this event. Read what former CA State Senator Bill Monning of Carmel wrote to the Monterey County Weekly on 8/12/21 (go to, then scroll down a bit).

Another challenge of Car Week is that many big rigs struggle to park without interfering with bike lanes. If driving such a vehicle, kindly keep in mind that bike lanes must be kept clear for people who bike. Avoid a ticket; make sure your vehicle is within the legally allowed parking zone.

Below, the drivers of these recreational vehicles / RVs are likely to be well aware of the importance of parking without intruding on bike lanes.
 “Sure, these big guys got us here, but now we’re gonna leave them parked. We came here to bike!”

Bike-and-ride RV trio (17)

Below: Truck alongside bike lane on Camino Aguajito at Fremont, across from Monterey Peninsula College
 SIGN - by big truck) Camino Aguajito yield to bikes (2)
Also note: There are a few special events dates during the year when biking has not been permitted on 17-Mile Drive, Pebble Beach. Refer to Bicycling Monterey’s biking Pebble Beach tips for details.

* * *

A 2015 note

Agricultural produce hauling in the Salad Bowl of America

In her 2/15/15 “We Could Car Less” column in the Salinas  Californian, MacGregor Eddy wrote, “The Transportation Agency for Monterey County will hold a board meeting at 9.m. Feb. 25 at 1428 Abbott St., Salinas….I do not suggest bicycling, it is a road with a lot of trucks and the bicycle lane stops several blocks before the Agricultural Center where the meeting is held.”

There are indeed lots of big trucks hauling agricultural produce in this neighborhood. I reached out to MacGregor to share the above tips on biking around big trucks and buses. Although most attendees of the TAMC board of directors meetings do not bike there, you will occasionally see TAMC staff members or others of us in attendance who do.

The information below was previously published May 13, 2010.

Recycle, bicycle, love your planet

Our neighbors across the Monterey Bay in Santa Cruz have an organization founded in 1970 that does a lot of good work:  Ecology Action.  When I lived in Santa Cruz, 1976-81, I appreciated them because of recycling.  I took my recyclables to their large yard devoted to that purpose–no curbside recycling back then! Today I especially appreciate Ecology Action’s contributions to bicycling, such as the brochures provided above. 

Special thanks to Rich Masoner of Cyclelicious for tracking down the above PDFs. Rich reported that as of 2/16/15, it appears the related web page is no longer on the Ecology Action website.

Also from Ecology Action: see “Taking the Lane” and “Making a Left Turn” videos.

A version of this post was first published May 13, 2010.


This post was published on 12 August 2022. One or more changes last made to this post on 6 November 2023.

Leave a Reply