Tips for a Safer Bicycle Ride
Unfortunately, not all bike rides end safely for a cyclist. Accidents between a cyclist and a vehicle are all too common. For this reason, it is important that all cyclists abide by the rules of the road and learn ways to keep themselves safe while biking.
A safe bike ride always starts before the cyclist even hits the road. Riders should only ride a bike that is the proper size for them. This will make it easier to brake and maneuver, allowing cyclists to focus on the road ahead. Adjustments to the bike size can often be made, but if a cyclist needs help with adjustments or sizing issues, they should take their bike to a bike shop.
In addition to the bike itself, another important piece of equipment for a cyclist is the helmet. Although not required by Texas law, wearing helmets can reduce the risk of head and brain injury. Helmets should be worn forward on the head so the forehead is always protected. They should also have an adjustable strap that is adjusted to fit snugly under the chin.
Cyclists can also keep themselves safe while they are on the road by following traffic laws. Like cars and trucks, cyclists are considered vehicles and must obey the laws of traffic including stop signs and traffic lights. Additionally, cyclists must always use hand signals when they are turning or stopping. This lets drivers know where the cyclist is traveling and if they should be prepared to stop.
Cyclists should also always travel on the right side of the road in the same direction as traffic and ride as consistently as possible. This means they should not weave in and out of traffic or make any sudden movements.
Like any other vehicle operator, cyclists must always remain focused on the road and understand what is going on around them. This means watching for vehicles that may be turning into their path or pulling into or out of driveways. To do this, cyclists must watch for a turn or reversing signals. Cyclists should be especially vigilant when traveling close to parked cars, as a driver could open a door into the cyclist’s path.
In addition to paying attention to their surroundings, cyclists should make a habit of occasionally looking behind them. This is especially important when they are traveling from the shoulder of the road into a turning lane or any time they are moving into the flow of traffic.
All cyclists should remember they have an obligation to abide by the same rules of the road as drivers to keep themselves and others safe. With these tips in mind, cyclists can help ensure a safe and smooth ride for everyone around them – motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians alike.