To yield, or not to yield? It depends on the city

To yield, or not to yield?

That is the question motorists, pedestrians & bicyclists are asking about urban trail crossings.

Law enforcement tells FOX 9, trail crossings create some of the most confusing situations on the roads in the heart of the metro.

One driver reports that he was recently pulled over and given a written warning after he pulled over to allow a bicyclist to safely cross in a St. Louis Park trail crossing. A Three Rivers Park District police officer told the driver, he had the right of way. And the bicyclist was the one who should have yielded.

FOX 9's Paul Blume spent some time at a busy trail crossing with police in Hopkins on Tuesday.

The officers spotted numerous violations.

In Hopkins where a couple of popular bike trails converge, the rule is that traffic must yield to pedestrians. That means walkers, runners, roller bladers & people walking their bike.

Meanwhile, cyclists on their saddle must yield to motorists. That means waiting until all lanes of traffic are clear before pedaling across the road.

Hopkins Police Sgt. Mike Glassberg said, “So often we see bicyclists not even stop here. They shoot through here and we’ve had so many crashes & near misses.”

But those on foot, on bikes, and behind the wheel seemed confused by the laws of the road.

Dave McCarville, who likes to rollerblade said, ”It’s confusing between St. Louis Park, Hopkins to every city. You don’t know what the heck is going to happen to you.”

Eden Prairie's Terri Tomlinson added, “I think right now it’s confusing for both motorists and bikers. It doesn’t seem really safe the way it is right now.”

A Public Safety Director in a north metro community told FOX 9, in his city, a trail crossing is treated like a crosswalk. And that gives anyone trying to cross, either on a bicycle or on foot, the right of way.