Just because winter is here doesn’t mean you have to put away the bicycle for the whole season. It does, however, mean that you need to take extra safety precautions to accommodate for slippery conditions and reduced visibility.
Reduce Tire Pressure
Let a little bit of air out of your tires. A tire with slightly less air in it will provide better grip on icy or slippery roads, giving you more control.
Have Your Bike Tuned Up
Make sure your bicycle is working properly as winter comes on. Have it professionally tuned up (or do so yourself) and get it running smoothly. The last thing you want in winter conditions is a faulty brake!
Get Winter Tires
If you are going to be cycling regularly on icy or snowy roads, consider opting for bike tires with a heavier tread or studs. This is particularly recommended if you are cycling in an area that gets snow regularly.
Accept that in the winter, everything is going to take a little bit longer. Be cautious and slow down your commute. Give yourself extra time to get to where you’re going.
Keep Your Bicycle Cool
Store your bike outdoors or in an unheated garage if possible. A warm bike that’s come straight from the indoors is more susceptible to ice forming on the gears and brakes, which is a serious safety hazard.
Clean Your Bike Thoroughly and Often
Road salt can do a number on bikes because it is corrosive. During winter when there is salt on the roads (and salty, muddy water splashing up onto your bike), be sure to carefully clean your bicycle regularly in order to prevent damage.
Shorter days and winter weather conditions mean decreased visibility for everyone on the roads at this time of year. Install front and rear lights on your bicycle, use reflectors, and wear brightly coloured clothing to make sure that you are visible to drivers whose vision may be obscured by fog, snow, and dark.
Adding fenders or mudguards helps to keep down mud and slush as well as reducing the amount of road-salt damage, so that your bicycle stays in safe condition.
What if You Get in an Accident?
We hope that these tips help keep you safe this winter. Unfortunately, even with the best safety precautions, accidents do happen on occasion. If you’ve been in a cycling accident and think you may be eligible for compensation, contact our cyclist accident lawyers to help you determine your next steps.