Some of the rules that keep roads safe for drivers and cyclists apply primarily to drivers. Some of the responsibility, however, falls squarely on the shoulders of bike riders. If you love to ride, keep these in mind:
- Go with the flow: Cyclists should ride on the same side of the road they’d be on if they were driving in a given direction.
- Stay in your lane: Even if there isn’t a designated bike lane, it’s best to stay off the sidewalk. You should typically ride as far to the side of the road as you safely and comfortably can (this varies by state).
- See (and obey!) the light: These apply to cyclists, too! Riding through a stoplight or stop sign is just as much of a no-no for bikes as it is for cars.
- Signal your intentions: Bike riders have a set of hand signals that communicate the same messages. Learn how to signal actions like turning and slowing. This is especially important if you’re on the far right side of a road and need to cut across a lane to make a left turn.
Finally, don’t forget that a bike helmet isn’t the only garment that will help keep you safe. Wear reflective clothing for day and night riding. Check your outfit for loose shoelaces, straps, or scarves that could get caught in chains or spokes and secure the bottoms of long skirts or the cuffs on loose-fitting trousers before you start pedaling.