Sunday, May 13, 2012

Bike shop Chino Hills: common crashes #3: The Crosswalk Slam

Our bike shop Chino Hills is running this series of posts about the most common bike accidents, from
#3 The Crosswalk Slam
You're riding on the sidewalk. You enter a crosswalk, and a car makes a right turn, crashing into you.
Drivers will not expect bikes in the crosswalk, and it's hard for them to see you when turning from one street to another, so this is a very easy way for you to get hit.  
One study showed that sidewalk-riding was twice as dangerous as road riding, and another study indicated even more so.

How to avoid this accident:
1. Get a headlight. If you're riding at night, a headlight is absolutely essential. It's required by law in most cities.
2. Slow down. Slow down enough that you're able to stop completely if you need to.
3. Don't ride on the sidewalks.  Crossing between sidewalks is a pretty dangerous move. If you do it on the left-hand side of the street, you risk getting slammed as pictured in the diagram. If you do it on the right-hand side of the street, you risk getting hit by a car behind you turning right.  Sidewalk riding also puts you in the path of cars pulling out of parking lots or driveways.

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