Are you the type of person who enjoys commuting to and from work on your bicycle? Have you come to find that this saves you time and money, while also providing the opportunity to get your exercise and know you're promoting a cleaner environment?
Although there are many benefits of commuting on your bike, there's something you need to remember: Your safety must come first.
If you aren't careful about what you're doing, you could make a mistake on the road that increases the likelihood of an accident.
Here are several things you can do to reduce the chance of a crash:
- Always use the bike lane, when available. If there is a bike lane for you to use, make sure this is where you ride. It's much safer than riding on the sidewalk or the shoulder of the road. If there is no bike lane, you should ride with the flow of traffic.
- Watch for the door zone. This is one of the most common causes of bike accidents in the city. You're riding along, thinking you're safe, and then someone opens a door into your path. If you're unable to move out of the way, this can lead to a serious accident.
- Beware of pedestrians. Just the same as motor vehicle drivers, pedestrians can cause an accident. For example, if someone darts into your path, you may find it difficult to swerve or stop. It's important to keep a close eye on motor vehicles, but you must do the same when it comes to pedestrians.
- Use hand signals and make eye contact. You need to do whatever it takes to make your intentions clear on the road. By using hand signals and making eye contact, you can give drivers a better idea of what you're going to do next.
These are a few of the more important things you can do to remain safe as someone commuting on a bicycle.
If you do everything right but are still part of an accident, turn all your attention to your health and well-being. You need to receive immediate treatment, as this can lead to a better long-term prognosis. From there, you'll have time to learn more about your legal rights and how to take action against the negligent party.