Approximately 158 Manitobans are hurt due to cycling-related injuries every year. The tips below can help you avoid becoming part of a statistic.
Cycling is a great way to stay active with the family, commute to work and explore the outdoors, but it’s important to remember to share the road, and how to stay safe doing so.
Signals and Signs
Even though you’re not in a car, you still need to abide by the rules of the road. Hand signals tell other road users what you’re doing and where you’re going. Make sure to brush up on which signals mean what and remember that stop signs apply to everyone, not just drivers!
Most people know that wearing a helmet while cycling is required by law, but did you know that wearing a helmet incorrectly can actually increase your chances of getting hurt? To make sure that your helmet fits the way that it should, trust the “2V1” rule:
- Start with your helmet sitting level on your head; there shouldn’t be more than 2 fingers between your eyebrows and the bottom of the helmet.
- The side straps should form a V shape below your ears.
- The chin strap should be adjusted so only 1 finger fits between your chin and the strap.
Even if you’re signalling, stopping and wearing a helmet correctly, you’re still at risk if other people on the road can’t see you. Wear brightly coloured, fluorescent clothing during the day and reflective clothing if you’re cycling at night. Reflective strips can be purchased specifically for your ankles, which help signal drivers that there’s another person the road. Use a white light on the front of your bike and a red or orange reflector on the back to increase your invisibility and ensure the cars behind you take notice.
For everything you need to know about biking safely this summer, check out Manitoba’s guidelines for injury prevention and bike safety.