It is more important than ever that cyclists stay vigilant about safety measures while cycling in urban areas. With more people exploring the benefits of cycling to work, accidents also become more prevalent. Of the multiple causes of cycling accidents, hazardous road conditions caused by weather present a major danger to cyclists.
In Contra Costa County, heavy rainfall typically comes from January to March. Rain may catch a commuter cyclist on the way home from work during these months. If you have to cycle in the rain, be aware of extra safety precautions.
Dangers of cycling in the rain
Reduced visibility presents one of the greatest dangers while cycling in the rain for both cyclists and drivers. With less time to react to sudden hazards in the road, it is more likely that you may get into an accident with a car or skid out on the road.
Other dangers include:
- Difficulty braking
- Slippery roads
- Sharp material hidden in puddles
Cyclists must be alert to these issues on rainy days.
Rainy cycling safety tips
If you decide to ride in wet weather, make sure that you prepare adequately.
Wear bright or reflective clothing, and use lights on your bike to make yourself more visible to motor vehicles. Additionally, avoid painted sections of the road and puddles, as those areas will be more dangerous.
For your bike, you should carefully wipe off the wheel rims and chain after each wet ride. This helps keep the brakes functioning correctly. You may also want to invest in chain oil to decrease the chance of rust interfering with your bike’s smooth ride.
Finally, while riding in the rain, dress in weather-proof clothing. The precipitation could cause a chill, especially to your hands and feet.
Though cyclists, unfortunately, cannot control all the safety aspects of sharing the road with motor vehicles, these measures may help them avoid an accident in the rain.