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Shea Law Group | A Bicycle Rider’s Guide to Staying Safe on the Streets of Chicago

Published on August 8th, 2011

Although bicycles belong on the streets, many Chicago area motorists and bicyclists have trouble sharing the road. But with a little bit of knowledge and careful driving, bicyclists and motorists can avoid auto accidents and injuries. Here are 5 things bicyclists can do to stay safe while on the road.

1. Follow Traffic Laws

Bicyclists are expected to follow traffic laws in the same manner that cars do. This means stopping at red lights, biking responsibly, and giving the right of way to pedestrians. Accidents with bikers occur mostly because bicyclists ride in unpredictable ways.

2. Use Bike Lanes Where Available

Although bicyclists have a right to ride their bikes in the streets of Chicago, many roads have bike lanes specifically designed for bicycles. When available, use bicycle lanes to free regular lanes for motorists.

3. Dress Safely

Wearing comfortable clothing and protective gear will keep you focused on driving and protect you in case of an auto accident. Never forget your helmet, and bring sunglasses or goggles to protect your eyes from debris and the sun. Also, roll up or restrain your pant legs to avoid getting caught in your chain wheels.

4. Inspect your Bike

Making sure that your bike is in tip-top mechanical shape will give you peace of mind and decrease the risk of an auto accident or personal injury. Check your tire pressure regularly, and make sure that your brakes are effective. Take your bike to a repair shop regularly for checkups and maintenance, or learn to do these things yourself.

5. Use Hand Signals

Just like turn signals on a car, hand signals allow motorists to better predict where you are going on the road. This will help you avoid auto accidents or confrontations with drivers.

If you’ve been injured in an auto accident involving a bicycle, then you are protected by Illinois traffic laws. Contact the personal injury attorneys at the Shea Law Group by calling (773) 365-0040 to learn about your rights to compensation.

 

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