By Chris Burman, Safety Coordinator
Bicycling is a great way to exercise and see the world at a different pace. Plus, using a bike for transportation is quite economical and reduces your carbon footprint. With many benefits, there is also a host of hazards that can be experienced by cyclists, even on designated bike paths. Below you will find some tips and tricks to enhance cyclist safety, including some links for a community assessment and helmet fitment.
Injuries and Deaths
Although nonfatal injuries have decreased over the last 10 years, preventable deaths from bicycle transportation incidents have increased by 44% (National Safety Council). Of the 1,260 deaths in 2020, 806 died in motor vehicle traffic crashes.
Check Your Equipment
Ensure your seat is adjusted to the correct height and locked in place. Make certain that all parts are secure and working properly, and that your tire pressure is appropriate. Test lights, horns and bells to ensure they work.
Plan to Be Seen
Wear bright colors and reflective clothing if possible, especially when riding between dusk and dawn. Position yourself when riding so that motorists are able to easily see you.
Wear a Helmet
Bicycle helmets should be certified by the Consumer Product Safety Commission and fit properly. Check out the link below for proper fitment.
Rules of the Road
Get acquainted with local traffic laws; bicyclists must follow the same rules as motorists. In a single file, always ride with the direction of traffic. Remain alert at all times and watch for opening car doors ahead. Use hand signals to communicate turns and never hitch onto cars.