Warm weather in Maine is right around the corner, and as the temperatures start to rise, the number of bicycle riders on the road is also likely to increase. Biking in Bangor and throughout Maine is a popular pastime and both locals and visitors enjoy taking to the trails or opting to use a bicycle for fun or fitness.
Unfortunately, as the number of bike riders climbs along with the temperature on the thermometer, there is also an increased chance of bicycle accidents occurring. Our Bangor bike accident lawyers know that bicycle riders are often seriously hurt in bike accidents because they have no protection from impact when struck by a vehicle. Bicycle riders, therefore, should do everything possible to stay safe and avoid becoming involved in a crash. Drivers, too, need to be responsible and respectful of bikers with whom they share the road.
Bicycle Safety Tips to Avoid Maine Bicycle Accidents
Bike Maine provides some important safety tips for all bicycle riders, whether they are on a path, a dirt trail, or the road. Bike Maine’s tips address everything from choosing the right bike to how to dress to how to make sure your bike is ready for the road. Some of the tips include:
- Ensuring you choose a bicycle that fits you. You should be able to stand with your flat feet on the ground over the bike without the bike touching your body. Your seat height should also be high enough that you can almost extend your full leg each time you pedal.
- Wearing a helmet every time you ride. The helmet should have a CPSC or Snell sticker and should be replaced if the helmet is cracked or if it becomes damaged. The helmet should also be replaced every five years.
- Wearing tight, bright clothing. Bright clothing will help to ensure that drivers see you approaching. If you are riding at night, you are required by state law to use a headlight that is visible for 200 feet as well as a reflector on the pedals and on the rear of your bicycle. Tight clothing will help to ensure that your clothes don’t get taught in the bicycle.
- Doing the ABC test before you begin to ride. The ABC test is an acronym to remind you to check the air in your tires; the brakes on the bicycle and the chains and cranks.
- Following the rules of the road. This includes riding with traffic, riding on the right, riding in a straight line so your movements are predictable, obeying traffic signals and signs, communicating with hand signals and always yielding to pedestrians.
By following these rules, bicycle riders can ensure they are doing everything they can to protect themselves and to make sure they are safe on their bike ride.
Drivers also need to remember that bicycle riders must be respected. This means yielding to bike riders and leaving them sufficient space in bike lanes and roadsides.
When a driver makes a careless error or breaks the rules of the road and a bicycle rider is injured in a bike accident, the driver can be held legally liable for any injuries that result.