BPD Corner is a monthly feature written by the Boise Police Department advising students how to be safer around campus.
As we move into longer days and warmer temperatures, many people make the move from driving their car to riding their bike. The city of Boise has put a great deal of effort into making the city a safe and enjoyable place to ride. Additionally, numerous trails are within minutes of the downtown core which allow bicyclists to “get away from it all.”
The Boise Police Department would like to take this early opportunity to remind citizens of a few bike safety tips to keep your ride enjoyable.
Always wear a helmet. Wear bright colored or reflective clothing.
Keep your bike well maintained. A regular tune up will ensure that your bike is in good riding shape.
Learn, use, and obey traffic signals. Bicyclists must obey the same traffic laws as motor vehicles.
If riding at night, use rear reflectors and front lights. If you are biking at night, you are required to have a headlight that emits white light visible from at least 500 feet away and a red reflector, on the rear of the bike, visible from 300 feet away.
Be aware of, and adhere to, posted “Dismount Zones.”
Ride in the same direction as traffic, not against traffic.
Watch for cars pulling out or turning. Make eye contact with drivers. Assume they don’t see you until you are sure they do.
Watch for car doors opening. Slow down at intersections. Look both ways before crossing. Do not weave in and out of traffic.
Don’t wear headphones when riding in the street. Cyclists need to be able to hear approaching vehicles and pedestrians.
Give pedestrians the right of way.
When passing a pedestrian, you must give an audible signal so they know you’re coming.
When you are not riding your bike, always lock it.
U-shaped bar and shackle locks are the most effective devices for preventing bicycle theft.
Pay special attention to “quick release” features on your bike. Consider taking the bike seat or even a wheel with you making the bike a less attractive target. If you can’t take them with you, lock them up too.
Register your bike with the Boise Police Department and for more information on bike safety please visit http://cityofboise.org.
Bike safety is everyone’s responsibility. The right equipment and the right mindset will help to ensure that riders keep the ride enjoyable and stay safe.