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7 Bicycle Safety Tips Everyone Should Know

Bicyclist Safety Tips

Being a cyclist can be dangerous. With potential dangers like careless drivers, weather hazards, poorly maintained roads, and other threats, it is important that all bicyclists use caution to avoid unnecessary accidents. While cars tend to be the most prominent threat to cyclists by the roadside, there are other dangers at large. In order to keep safe and protect yourself while on a bike, make sure you exercise these key bicycle safety tips.

1. Wear a helmet. It is crucial that you do what you can to protect your head whenever you are on a bike. Head and brain injuries can be exceedingly damaging and debilitating, so if you can exercise caution to prevent such harm, it is crucial that you do so. One swerve or accidental collision could cause you to strike the pavement, wall, or some other obstacle which may lead to a head injury.

2. Use your lights. Make sure you are always visible to other vehicles or bicyclists when you are out. If you ride at night, always use bright bicycle lights at the front and rear of your bike to alert others of your presence. Your bike, and your wardrobe, should also consist of reflective gear. Many shops sell reflective shirts, bike shorts, shoes, vests, and jackets to better protect riders in dim lighting and at night. If you ride during the day, try wearing brighter clothing rather than dark, muted colors that could more easily blend in with your surroundings.

3. Be visible. Besides using lights and the appropriate apparel, make sure you are doing what you can to remain visible to vehicles and other bicyclists nearby. This means avoiding blind corners or turns, and if you must stop on a road or trail, pull to the side and make sure you are easily visible from both directions. If you are riding on or near the roads, make eye contact with drivers before crossing or moving in front of a vehicle. Always be sure that they see you, never assume. Erring on the side of caution is always the safest bet.

4. Use hand signals. Whether you are riding on the road or on a biking trail, use the appropriate signals to indicate your path to those around you. This serves as efficient and effective communication to others in your party and everyone else on the road and can help avoid unnecessary mistakes that could lead to damaging and fatal crashes.

5. Pay attention. It can be easy to get distracted, especially on long rides, but it is important to always remain vigilant and never lose focus. Always keep your eyes on the trail or road before you. Do not text while riding your bicycle, even if you only look at your screen for a moment. It is also wise to avoid listening to music while riding, as it could make you deaf to your surroundings and potential signs of danger. For example, if a car is out of control and swerving into the bike lane, you might be unable to hear the screeching tires or horn with your headphones in. In order to keep all senses focused on your safety, you should avoid any such distractions.

6. Ride with the flow of traffic. Some bicyclists may choose to go against the flow of traffic, either to avoid crowds or find a more direct route to where they wish to go. However, riding against traffic can be extremely dangerous and could lead to head-on collisions with other cyclists, pedestrians, or vehicles.

7. Steer clear of parked cars. People exiting their parked vehicles can be careless and often forget to look for passing motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians. In order to avoid being hit by an open door of a parked car, give parked cars a wide berth when you ride by them.

Bicycle accidents can be extremely damaging and often result in serious, if not fatal injuries. If you or someone you love was involved in a bicycle accident, make sure you take immediate action to protect your rights and secure justice and compensation for your injuries.

Contact Goodman Acker P.C. to discuss your case with our Detroit personal injury attorneys.