Per the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration ("NHTSA"), 677 bicyclists were killed in bike-car accidents and 48,000 more were injured in the latest statistics from 2011, which is a 9% increase from 2010. And while the average age of those hurt/killed is 43 years old, children are victims too. Wearing a properly fitted helmet approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission every time you hop on a bike is a must to help avoid brain/head trauma. (Look for the CPSC sticker) Most accidents happened between 4 p.m. and 11:59 pm., so avoid nighttime and busy traffic times when biking. You can read the full report here http://goo.gl/mNgPd.
- Wear bright clothing to be seen
- Be sure your clothing will not get caught on the bike chain or spokes
- Wear the right shoes to protect your feet and peddle safely
- Do not have headphones in both ears as you need to pay attention to the sounds around you
- Ride the same direction traffic is driving
- Ride on bike paths, if available
- Lookout for car doors opening in your path
- Obey all traffic signs and lights
- Ride single file if riding with groups
- Learn hand signals for turns and stopping
- Cross at intersections
- Walk your bike across busy intersections
Warm weather is here and there will be plenty of outdoor traffic, be safe and happy riding!