Riding a bike is a fun and healthy way to travel on Wisconsin roads. It is a responsible choice for the environment and for your finances. But riding a bicycle on a road with cars and trucks can be dangerous. Bicycles offer zero protection to their riders, making a collision between a bike and a car catastrophic. Following these basic safety tips can protect Wisconsin bike riders and make sure they reach their destination safely.
Wear a Properly Fitted Bicycle Helmet. A helmet is your greatest defense in the event of a crash. Research has proven that helmets save lives, as many bicycle accidents involve a massive blow to the head. Whether it be collision with the ground or with another vehicle, bike riders can protect their brain and, in many cases, save their life just by choosing to wear a helmet.
Wear Clothing That Ensures You Will Be Seen. Many collisions involving a car and bicycle happen because the driver of the car claims that they “never saw” the bike rider until the crash. Drivers of cars are not looking for bicycles. Most often they are only expecting to see other cars in the driving lanes around them. So it is important that bike riders wear neon clothing, flashing lights, and reflective tape, no matter what time of day, to ensure that they will be seen by cars. And it is important to still be cautious. Remember, just because you can see a driver doesn’t mean that they see you.
Watch for and Avoid Road Hazards. Bike riders should always be looking ahead in the road for debris, potholes, puddles, and animals. The skinnier and smaller wheels of a bicycle are no match for most debris, and riding through a hazardous area can cause a bicycle to lose control and crash. Anticipating and avoiding dangers in the road can help Wisconsin bike riders stay safe.
Avoid Riding at Night. It is far more dangerous to ride a bike at night. Without sunlight it is harder to see hazards in the road, other vehicles, and for other vehicles to see you. Flashing lights and reflectors are a must if riding at night cannot be avoided. With visibility so greatly reduced, it is even more important that you make certain you can be seen.
Ride with Control. Ultimately you are responsible for controlling and steering your bicycle on Wisconsin roads. Do not carry books, food, or other personal items in your hands while you ride. Riding with only one hand on the handlebars reduces your ability to react to dangers and your ability to make controlled turns and lane changes. Carry your personal items in a bicycle carrier or backpack to keep both of your hands free.
Accidents can happen, if when bike riders do everything in their power to be safe. Distracted driving is a major problem for drivers of cars and trucks. Their choice to preoccupy their minds with things other than the road around them can cause them to severely injure an innocent Wisconsin bike rider.
If you or someone you love has experienced injury as a result of a bike collision with an irresponsible car driver, a Milwaukee personal injury lawyer can help. The experienced legal team at Urban & Taylor, S.C., will build your case to earn you the financial award you need to pay for medical expenses, lost wages, and your recovery. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation of your case.