Commuting in the city has its many advantages and is the FEND team’s preferred method of getting around. It is often the fastest and most efficient method to get to your destination, avoiding frustrating traffic or crowded public transit. Also, the health and environmental benefits are unending. Here are some basic safety tips to getting around for your next commute:
Always wear a proper fitting helmet. If you are unsure how to properly wear a helmet, you can see our fit guide here. Also, it is recommended to replace a helmet that is older than five years.
Make sure your bike is equipped with lighting especially in “limited visibility conditions” as required by law. There are 2 types of lighting as explained below.
- Active Lighting is powered by electricity. Most states require a white light attached to the front of the bicycle or cyclist with a distance of 500 ft. A red rear light is typically recommended, but not required by law.
- Passive Lighting is not powered by electricity (i.e. reflectors or reflective material). To note, all new bicycles sold in the US must have reflectors.
Follow the rules of the road and always yield to pedestrians. Bicycles are considered vehicles and must obey all of the same traffic rules as cars. Be sure to stop at all stop signs and red lights.
Avoid blindspots. When approaching an intersection, always be aware of cars turning and avoid riding in the blind spots of large vehicles
Watch out for car doors. Always ride at least 3 feet from parked cars. Don’t assume parked cars are empty and that the driver will look before opening their door
Communicate with hand signals. Make sure to alert drivers when you are turning or stopping by using hand signals
Keep a safe distance between yourself and other cars and riders. Aim for 1 bike length (or more) for every 5 mph you are traveling. Also, keep at least at least 4 feet between you and a vehicle