COVID-19/Coronavirus Update

Bicycle Program

Bicycle Detection at Traffic Signals

Traffic signals use loop detection technology to ’see’ vehicles and bicyclists passing through an intersection. Loop detectors work by passing electrical currents through conductive cables inside the pavement. When a metallic object passes over the magnetic field generated by loop detectors, the disruption tells the traffic signal controller that someone is waiting at or passing through the intersection. Because bicycles are smaller than vehicles, it is often more difficult for bicyclists to be detected at a traffic signal. While more recent advances in detector technology have alleviated some of these concerns, it is important for cyclists to understand the best way to be ‘seen’ by the traffic signal.

detection zone

Detection Zones for Regular Circular Loops

Regular circular loops with no diagonal wiring require a bicyclist to roll over the left or the right sides of the loop. Highlighted in green in the image above, these locations provide the bicycle rim with the best rate of success for detection, because it maximizes the bicycle’s interaction with the loop’s magnetic field.

detection zone

Detection Zones for Loops with Diagonal Wiring

Bicyclists may notice that some loops are wired at an angle to traffic. As shown above, it is best to roll over the center of the loop when wired diagonally. This same rule of thumb applies whether or not the loop has several or just a single visible wire at an angle to traffic. 

bicycle loops

Detection Zone for Bicycle Loops

Some bicycle lanes feature extra-sensitive detector loops designed specifically for bicycles. Pictured above, these detection zone for these specialized bike loops is straight through the center of the two octagons.

Video Detection

video detectionMany new intersections feature camera-based video detection. In the photo shown, a camera is used to detect motorists and bicyclists at an intersection. The camera’s processor is able to detect bicyclists at the intersection approach. If no loop detectors are visible at the intersection, keep an eye out for cameras placed on the signal pole’s arm.

Quick Links
Bicycling Resources
General Information
3900 Main Street - 4th Floor
Riverside, CA 92522

Phone: (951) 826-5311

Monday - Friday 7:30am - 5:30pm
Closed Major Holidays
raincross orange footer
City of Riverside Logo 30x30 City of Riverside  |  Explore Riverside  |  At Home in Riverside  |  Seizing Our Destiny

Font size:

Stop the Hacker
Copyright © 2015 City of Riverside | Accessibility Policy | Website Disclaimer | Privacy and Security Policy
Facebook: Like the City of Riverside LinkedIn Twitter YouTube: Subscribe to the City of Riverside RSS: Stay up-to-date with the latest news from the City of Riverside GovDelivery: Receive email alerts from the City of Riverside  RiversideTV Icon
Printed from: