Bicycling is a fun and healthy way to explore the outdoors, especially in spring and summer. However, biking also has safety risks that can lead to injury if you are not careful. The more you know about bike safety, the more you can enjoy your next bicycling adventure worry-free.
Stay Safe with these cycling tips:
1. WEAR personal protection
Wear a bike helmet and bright or reflective gear. Install a white front light and red rear light on your bike, as well as reflectors for visibility day and night. A horn, bell and rear-view mirror are also good safety additions.
2. Keep kids safe
Three out of four children in Canada own a bicycle, so stay on top of their equipment. Make sure as they grow that helmets are the proper size and protective—even in ride-along attachments.
3. Size your bike right
If your bike is too big, it is hard to control and makes for an unsafe ride. A bike shop can help determine the best fit for safety.
4. STOW before you go.
Carry items in a backpack or strapped to a bike rack or carrier. Your hands are for holding onto handlebars, not for carrying items while you bike!
5. A roadworthy ride
First, make sure the bike seat is at the right height and locked in place. Next, check to see if the tires are fully inflated. You may also want to carry a bike repair kit in your backpack to fix any unwanted flat tires. Don’t forget a water bottle for hydration and a healthy snack for energy!
6. BIke Responsibly
Obey street signs, signals and road markings when biking. An estimated 12 million bicyclists share the road with cars, so it is important to keep your eyes and ears on the road and not get distracted by your phone.
7. Don’t drink & Ride
Alcohol accounts for about 37 percent of bike fatalities. Stay alert and don’t drink if you are getting on a bicycle.
8. get educated
Many bike safety programs are available to help build your confidence and skills as a cyclist. There are also a variety of specialty programs for bikers interested in off-roading or types of biking that requires a greater skill level.
For more information on bicycle safety, visit the Canadian Red Cross.