As a resident of Bakersfield you have probably noticed the thriving cycling community that we have here. Despite our smoggy valley air and triple digit summers, cycling is a very popular recreation and sport in Kern County. It is a great way to relieve stress, get a good cardio workout, save on gas and stay healthy. But cycling on the roads in a busy city can also provide a great risk to your safety. With car accidents and collisions happening all around us every single day, learning how to avoid personal injury while biking on the road should be your first priority as a cyclist.
Wear a helmet. This is a given and should never be compromised. Helmets drastically reduce the risk of head injury in an accident.
Be visible when on your bike. Wear bright clothing so that motorists can see you. Use a headlight, rear light and reflectors in the evening time.
Follow all traffic laws and signals. Although you are not in a car, you are still required to obey all traffic laws. Adhering to traffic laws and the rules of the road will lessen your chance of collision.
Be on the lookout for parked car doors on the side of the road. A driver may still be seated in the car and may open their door unexpectedly.
Practice extra caution at intersections. Most collisions happen at intersections. Personal injury could be avoided by being extra aware when riding through an intersection.
Use hand signals. First look around you to try and make eye contact with other motorists and cyclists, signal, then look again. Don’t assume that others will stop for you.
Do not weave in and out of traffic. Act like you are driving a car by being predictable with your movements. Weaving in and out of traffic will cause unpredictable reactions from other drivers and increase your risk of personal injury.
If you find yourself involved in an accident while cycling, take all of the same steps as you would if it were a car accident. Call 911 and report the accident. Take down all necessary driver and insurance information. Remember that anything you say may be used against you in an investigation or settlement, so be cautious in discussing fault. Seek out any witnesses that may have been present with the accident occurred and ensure that law enforcement obtains their statements. Take photos of the accident. Lastly, contact an attorney to seek further assistance. Our office is ready and equipped to answer any questions you may have concerning your