Summer is almost here, and we are more than ready to get outside to enjoy the beautiful weather with family and friends. If you love riding your bicycle, we have some useful biking safety tips to help you and your loved ones have a safe and enjoyable summer of cycling.
Bicycling Safety Tips
- Wear a Helmet – You should wear a helmet every time you get on a bicycle. Do not assume that you are “safe” without a helmet because you are only riding a short distance. Always put on your helmet and readjust the straps, so it fits snugly. Remember, all riders under 18 are required by law to wear a bike helmet. Ontario bicycling law may not require adults to wear helmets, but it is strongly recommended to reduce the risk of a traumatic brain injury or other head injury.
- Other Safety Equipment – Wearing gloves, elbow pads, and kneepads may not be mandatory, but they can reduce the risk of a severe injury in a bicycle crash.
- Wear Brightly Colored Clothing – Just like with motorcycles, part of the danger of riding bicycles is that motorists do not pay enough attention to see you until a crash occurs. Wearing brightly colored clothing and reflective garments increases your visibility to motorists.
- Perform a Checkup – Regardless of whether you ride every day, once a week, or a few times a month, you should check your bicycle before each ride. Check the chains, brakes, handlebars, and tires to ensure each component is in good working order.
- Use Reflectors and Headlights – You should avoid riding at dawn and dusk when it is more difficult for motorists to see you. To increase the visibility of your bike, you should use reflectors on the front and back of the bike. Also, install and use a headlight and tail light at night.
- Obey Traffic Laws – Bicyclists must obey all traffic laws, including not carrying a passenger if the bike is only built for one. Remember, you have the same rights as other motorists, but you also have the same responsibilities.
- Ride on the Right – By law, you must stay as close to the right edge of the road that is safely possible.
- Choose Your Bike Carefully – When shopping for a bicycle, choose a bike that is the correct size for you. When sitting on the seat, you should be able to balance the bicycle with your toes. If not, it is too high for your height.
- Avoid Riding in Busy Places – Avoid riding in neighborhoods and on roads that are busy and have lots of traffic.
- Road Hazards – Remain alert and watch for road hazards that can cause an accident such as loose gravel, potholes, obstacles, road debris, and uneven pavement.
- Avoid Distractions – Riding while distracted is just as dangerous as driving while distracted. Do not use your cell phone or wear headphones while riding your bicycle.
- Do Not Bike Dunk – Drinking and biking can be very dangerous. If you enjoy alcoholic beverages, take another way home instead of riding your bicycle.
For more information about safe biking tips for summer, visit the Bicycle Safety website for the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. You can also download a copy of “Cycling Skills: Ontario’s Guide to Safe Cycling” on the Ministry’s website.
Call an Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer for Help
If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, call the team of lawyers at Diamond and Diamond for help. Contact our office 24/7 by calling 1-800-567-HURT or by visiting our website to speak to someone now. We offer free consultations and case evaluations.