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What should I do to stay safe on my bike this summer?

Is there anything better than going for a bike ride on a splendid summer day in Montana? Hardly. But it is important to keep safety in mind even when you are squeezing in a quick ride before heading off to work for the day. 

Consumersafety.org discusses some tips for avoiding bicycle accidents while riding this summer. Keeping safety at the top of mind will help you remember to follow the advice.

One of the biggest reminders is to follow the rules the same as you would if you were driving a car. "According to all state laws," Consumersafety.org reports, "cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motorists on the road."

That means driving with the traffic flow and not against it. This may seem counterintuitive because you may want to ride so you can see oncoming cars, but motor vehicle drivers are expecting you to be riding in the same direction they are, so stick to the traffic flow. 

Along with that, Consumersafety.org says be predictable. Do not make sudden moves and pull out in front of motorists. Instead, "before making a turn or changing lanes, look around and make eye contact with the drivers nearby." Be sure to use proper signals so they know what you are planning to do. 

Other practical advice given includes always wearing a helmet: "Wearing a helmet reduces your risk of head injury by about 60 percent and brain injury by about 58 percent." Besides that, do basic safety checks on your equipment. Be sure your bike is in good working order before getting out on the road.

This does not intend to provide legal advice, but only to educate about bicycle safety. 

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