Bike Safety Poster – Safer Things. Always wear your bicycle helmet.
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Bicycle Safety – How to Survive as a Bicyclist
Maintain Bike and Equipment
Plan to always do a thorough inspection of your bike before riding. Adjust the seat to a comfortable height and lock it into place so it doesn’t move during the ride. Double check that all parts are securely in place and functioning properly. All tires should be inflated to the correct pressure. All bikes should be equipped with reflectors on the front and rear of the bike, the pedals and the spokes. A bell or horn and rear-view mirrors come highly recommended.
Wear Protective Gear
When inspection is complete the next step is to put your helmet on properly. If the helmet is not worn properly it will have little to no affect in protecting your head. Follow these steps provided by NHTSA on properly wearing a helmet.
- Adjust sizing so helmet is snug
- Position on your head properly
- Side straps should make a “V” shape under and slightly in front of ears
- Center chin strap buckle
- Helmet should not rock more than 1 inch in any direction
Riders should also wear gloves to protect their hands and pads to protect their joints. Bicyclists should always wear neon, bright, or florescent clothes. This will ensure that vehicle drivers can spot them easily. Only ride during the day if it’s possible. Even with headlights, drivers have low visibility at night. So, if bicyclist must ride at night, riders should always wear reflective clothing and use flashing lights.
Follow the Rules
No matter what time of day bicyclists are riding, they must always abide by the rules of the road, for their safety and others. Ride single file in the direction of traffic, always remain alert and watch for hazards, use hand signals when necessary, and look both ways twice before entering traffic. Following the rules of the road as a bicyclist is key.
As NCS says, use safe riding techniques always! Using safe techniques will also keep you safe and comfortable. Always ride in control, only use smart maneuvers and ride at a safe speed. Keep enough space between you and others for you to safely react to something unexpected. Watch for cars coming out of alley ways, they may not see bicycles. A few more examples or safe riding techniques are:
- Don’t hug curb
- Don’t ride on sidewalk unless no other safe option exists
- Don’t pass other cyclists on the right
- When needed, make noise
- Be ready to break
- If 5 or more cars behind you, let them pass
- Be predictable
Cyclists should keep up on the maintenance of their bike and gear, follow the rules of the roads, ride safely, and respect others on the road.
Biking: Top Ten Ways to Cycle Safely
Summer is on its way, and with it comes a sea of sportsmen. All over the world, men, women, and children are ditching their coats and exchanging their jeans for shorts. The older crowd also makes a change from a standard walk or drive to a bike ride.
Bicycles are an efficient method of travel, mainly because they can be ridden almost anywhere in almost any weather. They are also environmentally friendly – note the lack of toxic fumes – and allow for refreshing exercise.
But, even biking has its rules and limitations; and when using a small and mobile mode of transportation that is hardly noticed by traffic, let alone pedestrians, these rules and limitations can mean the matter of life and death for yourself and others.
Without further ado, let’s look at the top ten rules for riding a bike this summer.
1. Wear a helmet
You’ve probably heard this all of your life from parents, friends, teachers, et cetera. But, a helmet is more than just a mere suggestion. Cyclists have fractured skulls or bashed their heads in altogether because they neglected to wear a helmet. The results are usually fatal, leaving family members grieving and heartbroken. True, not every accident is caused by not wearing a helmet, but to take that risk is to not only ignore your own welfare but the welfare of those you love.
If cost is the main concern, worry not. Bike helmets are usually in high supply at thrift stores and cost a lot less than those in a department store.
2. Don’t ride distracted
You’ve heard “don’t drive distracted” many times in driver’s education classes. Riding a bike isn’t any different. Never ride a bike distracted. Contrary to popular belief, you are the least visible on the road. Your ride is smaller than a standard car and is only slightly faster than a pedestrian. The non-biking community does not expect you. What does this mean? You need to keep your wits about you. The only way to do that is to focus, something you can’t really do if you have another person chatting in one ear and One Direction singing in the other ear. While eliminating these distractions might make your ride less pleasurable, at the very least, it will keep you alive and get you safely home, where you can turn the music on at full blast.
Technically, riding on the sidewalk is considered hazardous and unsafe, but it is still common in college towns and big cities. If you are going to ride on the sidewalk or a park/nature trail with pedestrians, you need to be careful. To a pedestrian, bikes are the ninjas of transportation: invisible, inaudible, and violent if gone unnoticed. Signal when you’re about to pass someone. Some of the most effective signals have been bike bells or horns, but a simple “passing on the left” as you approach is really all you need to keep you and another person safe.
4. Stay hydrated and eat
Summer is not just the season of tans and swimsuits. It’s also the hottest and driest season of the year. You would never go to the beach without something hydrating and appetite-quenching. You should never go biking without these same components. Cycling requires lots of physical exertion, which means it drains a lot of energy. Keep plenty of water on hand as well as snacks. This will prevent you from getting heat stroke and fatigue.
5. Avoid tricks
Tricks are rad. Tricks are cool. Tricks make you feel like the next Tony Hawk or Olympic athlete. Tricks also land you in a hospital, and that’s if you’re wearing the proper protective equipment. On the more extreme end of the spectrum, they can – and have – resulted in death. If you’re thinking about riding to impress this summer, do so at your own risk.
6. Ride solo
This should always be a given (unless you own a tandem bike or have a bike trailer for the little ones). One seat means one rider. It might seem fun or even romantic to have that special someone riding on the handlebars with you as you pedal, but it is also dangerous. The added hundred-or-so pounds will affect the balance, maneuverability, and power pedal of a bike. Not to mention, the actual cyclist has decreased visibility. If you really want to do something special with the ones you care about, ride bikes together (note: bikes in the plural) or share a car ride, but don’t ride the same bike if there’s only one designated seat.
It’s tedious, it’s boring, and it makes you feel like an overzealous museum curator. It’s the necessary, but near-always-neglected pre-check inspection! While it is considered all of the above, a pre-check assures a safe and comfortable ride, free of flat tires and loose chains. Not to mention, it will evaluate the bike’s maneuverability and control before riding. If there are any major malfunctions that must be amended, see a professional before riding.
8. Keep a first-aid kit
If you follow the bike rules above, you are guaranteed a safer ride, it’s true. But, even the safest riders end up injured. It’s always better to treat a wound sooner rather than later so that it won’t become infected. Keep a mini first-aid kit with you, and make sure it has plenty of bandages, antibiotics, gauze, and any other necessary implements as seen fit. Even if you don’t end up injured on a ride, a first-aid kit always comes in handy if you come across someone else that’s hurt.
9. Stand out
Going back to Rule 2, you aren’t always visible on the road. You can increase your visibility by wearing bright clothes and accessories. It doesn’t have to be something you’d wear all day. If you need to be wearing something formal for the day’s commute, put on a bright helmet, armband, or safety vest. Each of these can be removed upon arrival at your destination, but they will alert drivers to your whereabouts. Just remember: a cyclist’s gear is only as good as his riding. Just because you’re more visible does no mean you can let your guard down.
10. Know your bike laws
Every state has its own cycling laws, so make sure you know yours. If the law says stick to a bike lane, do it. If it says to use headlights and taillights in the evenings, you definitely want to do it. If safety is not a big enough issue, consider this: disobeying bike laws can and will result in fines and penalties. You should always know the bike laws of your home state, but you should also research the bike laws if you plan on biking in another state.
Now that you have all the rules to keep you safe, put on your helmet and safety vest and enjoy your safe and relaxing commute!
How to Survive as a Bicyclist
August is here, leaving kids asking if this is the real life or is this fantasy as summer ends. While there is no escape from the reality of school starting, now is a great time to go over back-to-school safety. This week’s focus is on walking and biking safety.
Not to put you under pressure, but it’s important to make sure your child is traveling to and from school safely. According to the NHTSA, the hour after school is when the most fatal pedestrian/vehicle accidents involving school-aged children occur.
Discuss these tips with your child to help them get to school safely and feel like the safety champions of the world.
General Walking and Biking Safety
- Use safe routes. Plan a route that avoids heavy traffic, mean dogs, busy intersections, or other hazards. Practice riding or walking the route before school starts.
- Don’t be the invisible man. Wear bright colored clothing. Avoid traveling during conditions that makes it harder for drivers to see you.
- Don’t use phones. Phones take too much attention and make it easier to make bad mistakes.
- Avoid goofing off. Remain vigilant. Don’t play around near the street, even if you’re having a ball.
- Cross traffic safely. Look both ways before crossing the street and follow the school crossing guard’s instructions.
Walking to/from School
- Stranger danger. Be cautious of people you don’t know. Don’t accept a ride unless it was arranged by a parent.
- Use adult supervision. Children under the age of 10 should have a parent or guardian walk with them to/from school.
- Don’t take shortcuts. Impromptu shortcuts may present unforeseen dangers. Some lead to trespassing. Follow the planned route.
- Use the buddy system. Older children should walk with a sibling or a good friend. Remember to avoid goofing off.
- Use available sidewalks. If walking on a road, stay as far from traffic as possible.
Biking to/from School
- Bike responsibly. Don’t ride on private property. Be courteous to people on the streets.
- Wear a helmet. Don’t lose your head. Wear a helmet even when biking short distances.
- Follow traffic laws. When riding on the road, ride the same direction as traffic. Use bike-lanes when available, and always use hand signals to keep yourself alive.
- Use crosswalks safely. Dismount and walk your bike across a crosswalk.
- Maintain your bike. Regularly check tire pressure, brake pads, and other components. A bike in good repair will keep you from biting the dust.
Remember these walking and biking safety tips on your way to school or whenever you say, “I want to ride my bicycle.”
For more safety trainings and safety tips, visit us at hardhattraining.com.
For more information and trainings go to Hard Hat Training Series!