Build it and they will come. This seems to be the philosophy behind the construction of bike lanes in Vancouver and surrounding municipalities. While bikers used to be a fairly uncommon sight during the daily commute, increased gas prices and better accessibility have made them ubiquitous on local roadways.
However, whether you find yourself driving alongside a bicycle or astride one, there are a few things that you should keep in mind to ensure the safety of yourself and those around you.
Bicyclists in the Tri-Cities: Be Visible and Aware
If you’re a bicyclist in Coquitlam, Port Moody or Port Coquitlam, there are some things that are absolutely necessary to remember prior to hitting the road. First, it’s important to note that BC Law requires that people on bicycles wear helmets. Although they might not be incredibly stylish, you risk a large fine and serious brain injury by biking without one. When biking after dark, it’s also important to affix a white headlight and a rear red light and reflector on your bicycle. Wearing bright, eye-catching clothing also does not hurt in regard to increasing your visibility among motorists.
Keep in mind that you can report any hazards on bike lanes by contacting an operator at 3-1-1. Municipalities wants to know about debris, leaves, or recurring ice on bike routes; and will do what they can to ensure a safe commute for bicyclists.
Check out bike sense, for more tips on bicycling in British Columbia.
Drivers in the Tri-Cities: Be Aware of Bicyclists
Although motorists and cyclists tend to not always get along, as a motorist it’s always important to appreciate a bicyclist’s vulnerability. While a car can weigh upwards of two tons, the average bike weighs less than twenty. Whenever there is a collision, the bike loses.
With this in mind, it’s important to be extra careful when driving around bicyclists. Whenever possible, you should provide cyclists with roughly three feet of clearance. Further, always make sure to signal on right turns. Although it’s important to do this no matter what, consistently failing to signal on rights practically guarantees that you will eventually send a bicyclist to the emergency room.
If you are a bicyclist who has been injured in a car accident or a motorist who has struck a bicyclist, please contact a lawyer at BTM for more information.