After a winter full of polar vortex talk, snow days, and slippery road conditions, it is no wonder people throughout the suburbs have a serious case of spring fever. While we know Chicagoland can still “enjoy” snow well through April, you may be itching to get a start on your warmer weather activities like biking. Jumping on your bicycle for a quick family ride, or for a longer excursion, is a great way to get exercise. However, the spring season can be especially dangerous for bicyclists as most vehicle drivers are not looking to share the road quite yet. Here are a few safety tips that will keep you and your family safe while biking this spring.
Get a Tune-Up
First things first, head to your favorite local bike shop and get a tune-up. Your bike has been in the garage all winter long and is not quite road ready. Your bike technician will give your bike a thorough inspection, from filling tires to double checking brakes. A tune-up for each of your family bikes is an investment in safety and in the longevity of your bicycle.
Wear Your Helmet
A bicycle crash can result in head trauma and injury. Fortunately, wearing a helmet can reduce the chance of serious and long-term consequences. Make sure everyone in your family has a helmet, even smaller kids who ride in a trailer attached to your bike.
Get Reflective Gear
Daylight hours are still shorter than in the middle of the summer, and your early morning or late evening rides can be especially dangerous without proper reflective gear. Be sure your bike has reflectors secured to the front and back, as well as on the wheels. Further, you should wear light-colored and reflective outerwear when you ride. The more you can be seen by a driver on the road, the less chance you have of being involved in an accident.
When you ride, be sure you have a way of identifying yourself and your emergency contacts. You can carry your wallet with you or you can purchase an identification bracelet that makes your name and contact information readily available in case you are in an accident and cannot speak for yourself.
Watch for Others
When you bike, it is important to take an extra vigilant stance with cars. Don’t assume the vehicle driver sees you unless you make eye contact with one another. Further, when you are driving, always double check your blind spot and pay close attention to bikers.
Early spring is an exciting time for outdoor enthusiasts, but it can also be dangerous. Be sure you are staying safe while out on the roads and keeping your family safe as well. If you do find yourself involved in a bicycle accident, give the team at O’Brien Law a call. We can help you navigate insurance compensation claims and assure you receive the compensation you deserve. Call today to set up your free consultation.