Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Pedal power

Today is National Bike to School day and students across the country are using pedal power to make it to classes this morning.  Biking to and from locations is a great way to exercise, save on fuel and it can be a lot of fun! But before you hop right back on that bike seat there are a few things that you may not know when it comes to riding your bike safely and legally. 

Before you read any further, we challenge you to check your bicycle riding knowledge with KDOT’s “How Well Do You Know How to Ride?” quiz.

Let’s address just a few of those questions with some bicycle safety tips:

Wear a properly fitted helmet: This isn’t your ordinary fashion accessory. This is the most effective way to prevent a serious head injury in the event of a bicycle crash.  According to there are a few ways you can check to ensure your helmet fits properly.

EYES check: Position the helmet on your head. Look up and you should see the bottom rim of the helmet. The rim should be one to two finger-widths above the eyebrows.

EARS check: Make sure the straps of the helmet form a "V" under your ears when buckled. The strap should be snug but comfortable.

MOUTH check: Open your mouth as wide as you can. Do you feel the helmet hug your head? If not, tighten those straps and make sure the buckle is flat against your skin.

Be safe. Be seen. Wear bright colors:  Regardless of the time of day, it is important to wear bright colors and reflectors so that you can be easily seen easier by motorists. According to Kansas Law, if you are biking at night you should use a headlight on the front of your bike and a red reflector on the rear of your bike. A rear red light emitting a red light visible from a distance of at least 500 feet may also be used.

Ride WITH traffic, not against it: This one is actually confusing to a lot of people. An easy way to remember this tip is remember the two Ws. If you are using WHEELS you ride WITH traffic.

Use Hand signals and obey all traffic signs.

Young children should have supervision when riding:
Make it a family event, and ride alongside the children. suggests limiting children under 10 years old to
sidewalks. Regardless of their age make sure they are safe and understand the importance of staying alert. Help them to look out for cars and other vehicles. Check out or 10 Simple steps for Bicycle Safety Chart for more information:


For more information about bicycle statutes in Kansas check this webpage:

And check out these links for more bicycle safety tips:

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