Have you rediscovered the joy of cycling? More and more adults are investing in bicycles and getting around on two wheels than ever before! The benefits of cycling are easy to see – it’s a great way to keep fit and healthy, it’s much better for the environment and it’s also a wonderful way to socialize and make new friends.
However, if the last time you were on two wheels was when you were cycling around your local neighborhood with your school friends, then it’s safe to say you might need a cycle safety refresher.
A large number of road accidents involve cyclists being hit by vehicles – click here to speak to a lawyer for personal injury in Charleston – so it’s important to remind yourself of how to keep safe on the road and reduce your chances of becoming involved in a crash. Read on for some helpful safety tips for anyone who loves cycling.
Protect your head
You wouldn’t get into a vehicle without fastening your seatbelt, so why get on your bike without a helmet? This simple protective device can save your life and reduce the severity of your injuries. If you haven’t already, invest in a high-quality helmet and always wear it when you cycle. No matter how short the distance.
No, this doesn’t mean doing wheelies as you pass the neighbors on your way to work. It means, make yourself seen. Always wear bright and fluorescent clothing and show off your cycling prowess by ensuring you can’t be missed! This is particularly important on dark evenings and gloomy mornings. A large percentage of cycling accidents occur due to poor visibility and drivers failing to spot cyclists in time.
Research your route
If you set off a little earlier, would you be able to take a longer – yet safer – route? Researching your route means cycling on more cycle-friendly roads, roads with less vehicular traffic and ones that are safer and well-lit. Remember, getting to your destination safely is much more important than how quickly you get there.
Know how to fix your bike
Got a puncture? Carrying a puncture repair kit with you will always ensure you’re never caught out by an inconvenience. If you don’t know how to repair your bike, learn now!
Always pay attention
Cyclists who ride their bikes wearing headphones or (shockingly) whilst looking at their smartphones, are not only putting themselves in danger but drivers, other cyclists and pedestrians. Road conditions can change in an instant, so always focus on the road ahead and stay alert!
Finally, be ready to give way
The roads are for everyone. Sadly, not all motorists are willing to share them, with drivers often showing hostility and impatience towards cyclists. Always bear this in mind when turning, or at a junction, even if it’s your right of way, remember that not every driver will be willing to give you that courtesy, be ready to yield at a moment’s notice.