With summer solstice quickly approaching this upcoming weekend, more and more cyclists are cruising the roads for longer periods of time every day. Though this of course a wonderful thing, more cycling time naturally equates to higher chances of accidents.
On my article-based website, barthaynes.com, I wrote this week about how a cyclist can treat road rash in a blog post titled How to Treat Road Rash. However, it’s of course best to learn safety measures for riding your bicycle before you get to the point of needing to seek medical attention.
Today, I’ll be sharing some images from the web detailing and encouraging safe bicycle riding. In between photos, I’ll share important safety tips from one.nhtsa.gov.
- See and Be Seen. Whether daytime, dawn, dusk, foul weather, or at night, you need to be seen by others. Wearing white has not been shown to make you more visible. Rather, always wear neon, fluorescent, or other bright colors when riding day or night. Also wear something that reflects light, such as reflective tape or markings, or flashing lights. Remember, just because you can see a driver doesn’t mean the driver can see you.
- Watch for and Avoid Road Hazards. Be on the lookout for hazards such as potholes, broken glass, gravel, puddles, leaves, and dogs. All these hazards can cause a crash. If you are riding with friends and you are in the lead, yell out and point to the hazard to alert the riders behind you.
- Avoid Riding at Night. It is far more dangerous to ride at night than during the day because you are harder for others to see. If you have to ride at night, wear something that makes you more easily seen by others. Make sure you have reflectors on the front and rear of your bicycle (white lights on the front and red rear reflectors are required by law in many States), in addition to reflectors on your tires, so others can see you.
- Wear a Properly Fitted Bicycle Helmet. Protect your brain, save your life. For more information see the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration publication
“Easy Steps to Properly Fit a Bicycle Helmet.”
- Stay Alert at All Times. Use your eyes AND ears. Watch out for potholes, cracks, wet leaves, storm grates, railroad tracks, or anything that could make you lose control of your bike. You need your ears to hear traffic and avoid dangerous situations; don’t wear a headset when you ride.
- Watch for Parked Cars. Ride far enough out from the curb to avoid the unexpected from parked cars (like doors opening, or cars pulling out).
- Obey All Traffic Laws. A bicycle is a vehicle and you’re a driver. When you ride in the street, obey all traffic signs, signals, and lane markings.
- Be Predictable. Ride in a straight line, not in and out of cars. Signal your moves to others.
- Control Your Bicycle. Always ride with at least one hand on the handlebars. Carry books and other items in a bicycle carrier or backpack.
Stay safe out there! Happy riding!