May is National Safe Biking month. More than two people lose their life each day somewhere in the United States to a bicycle/motor vehicle accident. There are an additional 45,000 people injured in bike accidents yearly. In Utah, approximately three people die annually in a bike wreck while about 5,000 people are injured. Whether you drive or ride, there are steps that you can take to help reduce these numbers.
Drivers: Please Share the Road
Drivers should be responsible for sharing the road with bicyclists in order to avoid bike/car accidents. Keep these tips in mind;
- Yield to bicyclists as you would other motorists
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times.
- Look for bicyclists every time you enter a roadway or back out of a parking space.
- Be especially cautious when turning right on red. Bicyclists may have pulled up beside your vehicle without you noticing them.
- Driving defensively safes lives. Never go faster than road conditions allow.
- Pass safely making sure to give bicyclists plenty of room.
Riders: Think Before You Crash
There are several things that riders can do to help prevent accidents. Remember that the average bike weighs about 15 pounds while the average car weighs 4,079. Therefore, the bike will lose in every matchup. Here are some tips to remember.
- Bikes come in many different sizes, so make sure to choose one that fits you properly.
- Do a safety check before each ride to make sure that your bike is working properly.
- Always wear a helmet, and wear clothes to increase visibility.
- Ride your bike one person per seat.
- Always keep both hands on the handlebars unless signaling.
- Plan your route so that you encounter the least amount of traffic possible.
- Use bike trails and lanes whenever they are present.
- Most bike accidents occur between 4 PM and 11:59 PM. Plan your trip as early as possible.
Hurt in an Accident
Even with all these precautions, it is not always possible to avoid an accident. If you are involved in one, then make sure to call Rex B. Bushman. He has the experience to help you get back on the road quickly.