Visibility to passing motorists has become more critical than ever when road riding. There are many reasons why. The percentage of motor vehicle accidents caused by distracted driving is at an all-time high. Plus, as we get deeper into the fall/winter seasons, the days get shorter, and the chances of riding in low-light situations increase. Early fall is a crucial time to pay attention to the shortening days. Adding visibility is simple. First, a good set of lights both front and rear is a great starting point. A good set of lights does not have to break the bank, but there are plenty of options in all price ranges. Things to look for include battery type, lumens, and ease of mounting/dismounting. The second way to add visibility is clothing. Look for fosforescent colors like safety yellow or orange. Also look for 3M™ Scotchlite Reflective to be placed on the clothing in visibile areas. The third way to add safety while road riding does not alert passing motorists, it alerts the rider. The Garmin™ Varia Radar system uses a sonar like system that will notify the rider when a car is approaching from behind. This system adds great peace of mind when cycling on the roads in all situations whether it be city riding or rural. With proper visibilty efforts, cycling on the road can be fun and a little less worriesome.
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The Importance of Being Visible While Cycling
Cycling is a great way to stay fit, save money, and reduce your carbon footprint. However, it can also be dangerous if proper precautions are not taken. One of the most important things you can do to stay safe while cycling is to be visible. In this article, we will discuss why being visible while cycling is important and how you can ensure that you are visible to motorists and other cyclists.
One of the main reasons why being visible while cycling is important is because motorists are not always paying attention to their surroundings. They may be distracted by their cell phones, their GPS, or their passengers. In addition, cyclists are much smaller than cars and can easily blend into the background. This makes it difficult for motorists to see them, especially at night or in bad weather.
Another reason why being visible while cycling is important is because it can help prevent accidents. If motorists are able to see cyclists from a distance, they have more time to react and avoid a collision. This is especially important when cyclists are sharing the road with cars, trucks, and other vehicles that are much larger and more powerful than bicycles.
How to Be Visible While Cycling
Now that we know why being visible while cycling is important, let's discuss some ways that you can ensure that you are visible to others. The following tips will help you stay safe while cycling and reduce your risk of being involved in an accident.
1. Wear Bright Colors: One of the easiest ways to be visible while cycling is to wear bright colors. This will make you stand out from your surroundings and help you catch the attention of motorists and other cyclists. Neon green, yellow, and orange are popular colors for cycling apparel because they are highly visible and easy to spot.
2. Use Reflective Gear: Reflective gear is another great way to be visible while cycling. Reflective materials can be added to your clothing, helmet, shoes, and even your bike. This will help you be seen by motorists even in low light conditions, such as at night or in the early morning.
3. Use Lights: Lights are an essential part of any cycling safety kit. Front and rear lights can be attached to your bike and turned on to help you be seen by others. You can also use lights that flash or blink to increase your visibility even further.
4. Follow Traffic Laws: Following traffic laws is an important part of being visible while cycling. This means riding in the same direction as traffic, stopping at stop signs and red lights, and using hand signals to indicate your turns. By following these rules, you will be more predictable to motorists and reduce your risk of being involved in an accident.
5. Stay Alert: Finally, it is important to stay alert while cycling. Keep your eyes on the road and be aware of your surroundings. Look out for potential hazards such as potholes, debris, and other obstacles. By staying alert, you can react quickly to changes in your environment and reduce your risk of being involved in an accident.