Tomorrow is Walk & Bike to School Day! While pedestrians and bicyclists should take extra care to share the road on this holiday, it's critical you adhere to these basic safety rules every day of the year:
- Devices Down. Heads Up. Minimize all distractions when traveling on roadways. You need your eyes and ears to stay safe. Watch out for potholes, cracks, wet leaves, storm grates, gravel, or anything that could impact your wheels and make you lose control of your bike. You need your ears to hear traffic and avoid dangerous situations; don’t wear headphones or earbuds when riding.
- When in Doubt, Wait it Out. Never proceed if uncertain a driver sees you. Make eye contact with drivers and keep an eye out for pedestrians. If a driver is on a cell phone, he or she may be too distracted to drive safely.
- Go the distance to save your life. Only cross the street at a corner or crosswalk. Every time. Stop and look left, right and left again before entering a street or crossing an intersection. Look back and yield to traffic coming from behind before turning left.
- Use your head. Always wear a helmet when riding a bicycle. Your helmet should meet the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC) standards. When properly worn, a helmet should sit on top of the head in a level position, and should not rock forward, backward or side to side. Remember these three steps — EYES-EARS-MOUTH— to make sure your helmet fits and is being worn correctly every time.
- Be Seen. When riding at dusk, dawn or in the evening, wear bright colors, turn on front and rear lights, and make sure your bike has reflectors. It's also smart to wear accessories that have reflective materials to improve your visibility to motorists. Remember, just because you can see a driver doesn’t mean the driver can see you.
- Go with the flow. Ride on the right side of the road, with traffic, not against it. Stay as far to the right as is safe and practical.
- Share the road and stay alert! Drivers should pass bicyclists with at least 3 feet passing distance—it’s the law.
- Follow the rules. State law allows bicyclists to ride on the street obeying the same rules as motor vehicles, or on the sidewalk obeying the same rules as pedestrian. Use appropriate hand signals, respect traffic signals, and stop at all stop signs and stoplights.
You can find more safety tips at http://www.coj.net/allinduval