Riding a bicycle on roads can be really dangerous since you take less space than a motor vehicle would these days. It is easy to get hit by a motorist while you are riding your bike on the road. Because of this danger, there are certain safety measures you can take to prevent being hit by a motorist who may not have realized you were even there. Let’s take a look at these safety precautions, shall we?
1. Ride further to the left.
A dangerous aspect of riding on the road, especially in a downtown area, is being hit by a door opened by someone parallel parked on the road. There are times when a motorist cannot see that you are on the road so will open their door. Riding further to the left while in these dangerous areas can prevent you from being hit by an open car door. It can also help motorists see you without you entering their blind spot.
2. Slow down in the road.
One of the biggest tips for riding in the road is to slow down to the point where you can come to a complete stop whenever you need to do so. People will be passing you at any chance they can take and may come to a sudden stop at any time. Make sure you are riding at a speed where you can stop safely behind them whenever this happens to you. If you need to stop suddenly for any reason, it is a good idea to signal to anyone behind you that you are stopping. You could also pull yourself completely off the road to a safe place where you wouldn’t be hit if someone else in a motor vehicle pulls off behind you.
3. Get a headlight for your bike.
When driving on the road at night, it is incredibly difficult for drivers of automobiles to see you without a reflective surface located on the front or back of your bike. There will be a glare on your bike as well when the sun is setting in the drivers’ eyes as well, which makes it even harder for them to see you or pass you safely. Because of that, it is a good idea to make sure you have a headlight on your bike and a reflective surface on the back of your bike. The worst thing that could happen is getting hit because the other driver didn’t see that you were in the road beside them or in front of them.
4. Wave to get their attention.
Don’t think people will be paying attention to you while you’re on the road. It’s always a good idea to add some movement while you’re on the road. The drivers passing you by may not even see you while you’re biking so make sure you’re ensuring these people are seeing you. Use your hands to signal which way you’re turning and make eye contact with drivers if at all possible. That way, you know for a fact that they have seen you before passing you to get to their destination.
5. Don’t ride on the sidewalk.
Riding your bike on the sidewalk can be incredibly dangerous and not just for you as the bicyclist. If you’re riding on a sidewalk of any sort, you’ll come across an area where you have to cross at least 2 lanes of traffic. This can be incredibly dangerous for you since a motorist could come out of nowhere at any time. There is also a sense of danger for any pedestrians you are passing while on the sidewalk since you are going at a much higher rate of speed than they would be. To make sure you are not hit while riding on a sidewalk, don’t ride on the sidewalk at all unless it is a long one free of pedestrians or cross-walks.
Greenville, NC Bicycle Accident Attorneys
I’m Brian Ricci, a Bicycle Accident Lawyer serving Greenville, NC and the surrounding areas. If you have suffered a personal injury, please call me anytime at (252) 777-2222 or 800-387-6406 for free, friendly advice.
I am a longtime member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum.