4 Bike Safety Tips to Recognize National Bicycle Safety Month

Lever & Ecker, PLLC May 5, 2021 General

According to statistics provided by New York City’s Department of Transportation (DOT), over 778,000 adults actively ride their bicycles several times each month as a form of recreation, exercise, or a means of transportation, making bicycles one of the most widely-used vehicles in the state. Riders in New York State are often put at an increased risk when they share the road with cars, trucks, and buses, especially in New York City. Traffic can be dangerous for a bicyclist, with potentially devastating consequences, if the necessary safety measures aren’t put in place.

May is National Bicycle Safety Month, which makes it a great time to review important tips on how to maintain ongoing safety practices related to the handling and care of bicycles for both you and your family, to avoid or reduce the potential for accidents, including those resulting in personal injury

1. Always Use Bicycle Safety Gear

In New York, bicyclists under 14 years old are required to wear bicycle helmets when they are riding, or passengers on, a bicycle. Most experienced bicyclists are familiar with the need for helmets and other safety equipment when they are riding in New York City, but it is important to identify and utilize gear that is appropriate for them. For example, if you were to purchase a bicycle helmet that was either too large or too small for you, it would not provide as much protection as one that fit you appropriately.

Other common pieces of safety gear include:

  • Reflective material (stickers, tape, clothing)
  • Lights (headlights, blinking lights, red rear lights)
  • Eye protection (goggles, sunglasses)
  • Protective gear (Velcro pads, mouth guards, gloves)
  • Bells or horns
  • Mirrors

Some cyclists also carry additional equipment that can help them in the event of an emergency or bicycle accident, including multitools, flashlights, first aid kits, tire pumps, and even spare tires. Regardless of whether you have just begun cycling or have been doing it for years, these measures are necessary to ensure the highest level of bicycle safety.

2. Maintain Regular Bicycle Maintenance

One of the most overlooked aspects of bicycle ownership is the regular maintenance and upkeep that they require. Whether you use your bicycle once a year or three times a day, it is important to uphold proper bicycle maintenance.

Many aspects of a bicycle need to be regularly monitored and maintained, including the tires and chains. Those who own and operate a bicycle in New York should routinely check their tire pressure and traction, as well as the state of their brakes, the handlebars, and even the seat. Even one improperly maintained piece of equipment can cause an unfortunate accident.

3. Avoid Distractions While Riding a Bicycle

Cyclists who live in New York, and particularly in New York City and the surrounding areas, are familiar with how congested the roads can be at all hours of the day. Navigating normal levels of New York traffic is already complicated enough without including additional distractions like texting, talking on the phone, and listening to music, audiobooks, or podcasts. 

Anyone who operates a bicycle in New York is encouraged to reduce any possible distractions that might reduce their ability to focus and to ensure that their attention is entirely on the road and their immediate surroundings.

4. Stay Hydrated While Bicycling

During the summer, New York’s high temperatures can cause physical reactions in many cyclists, such as dehydration, overheating, and fainting. One of the best ways you can stay safe during the summer is to ensure that you and your family are hydrated while cycling. Carrying a reusable, insulated water bottle during rides can make it easier to hydrate, and they can also be filled at public water stations, making them an eco-friendly and safe way to stay cool in the heat.

Trusted Bicycle Accident Lawyers in White Plains, New York

Bicycle safety doesn’t just involve helmets, tires, and reflective gear: it can also mean having the best possible legal representation on your side if you are involved in a bicycle accident in New York. If you have recently been involved in an incident in New York while riding your vehicle, the office of Lever & Ecker, PLLC can help you file your claim and get you the financial compensation that you deserve.

Our team of experienced personal injury lawyers is ready to work with you and build a strong case for your New York bicycle accident. We are proud to have served our community since 1990, helping thousands of clients across the state obtain justice for their bicycle accidents.

For more information on how to schedule your free case consultation with one of our dedicated legal professionals, call us at (914) 288-9191 or reach out to us online to get started.