Tips for National Bike Safety Month

Tips for National Bike Safety Month

The month of May is annually regarded as National Bike Safety Month. During this month, individuals are encouraged to educate themselves about important safety measures that can be taken to help keep themselves safe on the road. In a study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), it was reported that there were 1,105 fatal bicycle collisions in the year 2022 alone, thus showing how grave the situation of bicycle safety is. Furthermore, let’s explore some steps that can be taken to help keep bicyclists safe while riding.

Conduct a Pre-Inspection

Before you even think about going on a bicycle ride, it is vital that you conduct a pre-inspection to make sure that your bike is in good riding condition. You will want to make sure that the brakes are responsive, tires are properly inflated, chains are lubricated, and the handlebars have a full range of motion. Then, you will want to make sure that you are riding a properly sized bike in which your feet can stand flat on the ground while perched on the seat. You may need to adjust your seat height to do this.

Wear a Helmet

The most important step towards ensuring safety on your bicycle is to wear a helmet. In fact, studies show that wearing a bicycle helmet reduces traumatic brain injuries by 53% and the number of fatal or serious injuries by 34%. Furthermore, the importance of wearing a helmet should not be undermined. To ensure the greatest effectiveness of a bicycle helmet, wear one that fits you properly, as ill-fitting helmets will not protect you either.

Stay Visible

A crucial safety step that should be taken as a bicyclist is to stay visible. Due to their size, bicycles are much more difficult to spot on the road, making it easy for another motorist to accidentally crash into them. Therefore, bicyclists should wear bright, reflective clothing that draws the attention of other drivers. This is especially important during the late night and early morning hours when visibility is limited. Additionally, make sure your bike is equipped with reflective lights on both the front and the back.

Use Hand Signals

The next safety tip that all bicyclists should adopt is to use hand signals to indicate to other motorists and cyclists where they are planning to move next. These include basic signals such as right and left-hand turns and stops, as well as alerting others when there is a hazard in the road. Signaling to other motorists will greatly improve predictability on the road, thereby reducing the opportunity for accidents.

Obey Traffic Laws

Just because you are riding a bicycle does not mean that you are exempt from following the rules of the road. Just like all other motorists you must obey stop signs, traffic signals, speed limits, and more. In addition, all bicyclists must be educated about state-specific bicycle laws that indicate important rules such as right-of-way laws.

What To Do After a Bicycle Accident

In the unfortunate event that you wind up in a bicycle accident, there are a few important steps that you should take. First, call 911 and seek medical assistance for any injuries you may have sustained. Then, if you are able, you will want to gather the contact information of any parties involved in the crash, as well as any witnesses. Afterward, document the accident scene with photographic and videographic evidence. This will be essential in proving your personal injury case. Finally, reach out to an experienced Kent bicycle accident lawyer who can guide you through the legal process, allowing you to focus on your recovery.