Cycling Safety Idaho
Cycling is an awesome form of exercise and a clean, healthy form of transportation. It also inherently comes with some level of danger. Tragically, hundreds of cyclists die on US roads each year. By following the safety tips below you can lower your chances of having a serious accident as a cyclist in Idaho.
Be Totally Visible – It’s no secret, normal traffic on roadways has a difficult time spotting and paying attention to cyclists. For daytime riding, wear bright colors and if you’re riding around dawn, dusk or at night be sure to wear reflective materials. Reflectors for your bicycle are a must. Have reflectors on the front and back of the bicycle and have a white headlight plus a red tail light when riding around sunrise, sunset, or at night.
Obey Traffic Laws – In many cases, the cyclist is not at fault in vehicle vs. cyclist accidents, but it is still paramount for cyclists to obey all traffic laws. See our page (link to Idaho cycling laws page) for a complete list, but here are some of the more basic ones.
o Bike on the road in the same direction as traffic.
o Keep out of drivers’ blind spots.
o When available use marked bike lanes.
o Stop at red lights and stop signs, just like you would in a car.
o Use appropriate hand signals.
Keep Your Bike in Shape – Don’t want your bicycle to break down? Then take some preventive steps to keep it in shape! We’ve got some easy do-it-yourself projects to keep your ride running smooth.
- Before every ride:
o Check tire pressure. If it’s low, find the correct PSI (listed on the side of the tire) and fill it accordingly.
o Take a look at the tire tread on both tires for embedded debris (sticks, rocks, gum etc.) and remove any debris to avoid getting a flat.
o Squeeze brakes to make sure they’re grabbing.
o Clean the bike’s frame with a cloth.
o Wipe the chain clean and then re-lube the chain.
o Test the tightness of the moving parts with a wrench.
o Clean and wax the frame to protect the paint and inspect for any cracks or dents.
o Check all cables for fraying, breaks or rust. Replace if necessary.
o Replace the brake pads.
Repairs – Even with all the preventative measures in the world, your bicycle is eventually going to need some repairs. For anything that seems major or complicated, just take your bicycle to a trusted bike shop. Below we have links to some basic repairs you can try yourself.
o Change a Flat Tire – (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZbeR0mJBkk)
o Fix a Slipped or Skipping Chain – (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5sQnJYwR8s)
o Wrap Worn Handlebars – (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8PqH7bltJQ)