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* All Charleston Cycle Fest participants are required to wear a helmet on all rides
* All CCF participants must sign a waiver at the time of registration packet picket up
* It is highly recommended that all participants review these safety tips and reminders below.
1. Protect your head.  Wear a Helmet
Never ride a bicycle without a helmet. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
(NHSTA) and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recommend that
bicyclists wear a helmet that complies with the CPSC standard.

Bicycle helmets can reduce head injuries by 85 percent. Select a helmet that fits snugly
and sits flat on the head.  
All you need to know about helmets.

2. Make sure your bicycle is adjusted properly.
Make sure you can stand over the top tube of your bicycle. Adjust your bicycle to fit you
(see Owner’s Manual).

Before using your bicycle, check to make sure all parts are secure and working well. The
handlebars should be firmly in place and turn easily. Your wheels must be straight and
secure.  
ABC Quick Check

3. Check your brakes before riding.
Always control your speed by using your brakes. If your bicycle has hand brakes, apply the
rear brake slightly before the front brake. Always keep your brakes adjusted. If you cannot
stop quickly, adjust your brakes. Consult your Bicycle Owner’s Manual or have a bicycle
shop adjust the brakes. When your hand brake levers are fully applied, they should not touch the handlebars. Each brake shoe pad should
wear evenly and never be separated more than one eighth inch from the rim.
Ride slowly in wet weather and apply your brakes earlier – it takes more distance to stop.

4. See and be seen.
Wear clothes that make you more visible. Always wear neon, florescent, or other bright colors when riding a bicycle.

5. When biking at night.
It is far more dangerous to bicycle at night than during the day. Most bicycles are equipped for daylight use and need to be adapted for
nighttime use.

When riding at night, you should do the following:
1. Ride with reflectors that meet CPSC’s requirements. These should be permanently installed on bicycles for daytime use also. If a carrier
is  added, make sure the rear reflector remains visible.
2. Add the brightest lights you can find to the front and rear of your bicycle.
3. Wear retro-reflective clothing or material – not just white or florescent – especially on your ankles, wrists, back, and helmet.
4. Only ride in areas familiar to you. Brightly lit streets are best. Always assume you are not seen by a driver
Options for lights and reflectors.

6. Stay Alert.  Watch out for obstacles in your path.
Stay alert at all times. Watch out for potholes, cracks, expansion joints, railroad tracks, wet leaves, drainage grates, or anything that could
make you fall.

Before going around any object, scan ahead, and behind you for a gap in traffic. Plan your move, signal your intentions, and then do what
you planned. If you are unsure, or lack the skill to handle an especially rough area, pull off to the right side of the road and walk your bicycle
around the rough area.

Be especially careful in wet weather and when there could be ice or frost on your path.

Cross all railroad tracks at a 90 degree angle and proceed slowly.
Use special care on bridges.

7. The safe way is the RIGHT way.
Ride on the right side in a straight predictable path. Always go single file in the same direction as other vehicles. Riding against traffic puts
you where motorists don’t expect you. They may not see you, and may pull across your path, or turn into you.

Young children, typically under the age of nine, are not able to identify and adjust to many dangerous traffic situations, and therefore,
should not be allowed to ride in the street unsupervised. Children who are permitted to ride in the street without supervision should have the
necessary skills to safely follow the “rules of the road.”
Reasons to Ride on the Right   How far Right?

8. Be aware of the traffic around you.
Over 70 percent of car-bicycle crashes occur at driveways or other intersections. Before you enter any street or intersection, check for
traffic. Always look left-right-left, and walk your bicycle into the street to begin your ride.

If already in the street, always look behind you for a break in traffic, then signal, before going left or right. Watch for left or right turning
traffic.
 Traffic Principles     Turns and Turn Lanes

9. Obey Traffic Laws
Bicycles are considered vehicles. Bicyclists must obey the same rules as motorists. Read your State drivers’ handbook, and learn and follow
all the traffic signs, laws, and rules for operating a vehicle on the road.

Always signal your moves. Be courteous to pedestrians and other vehicle operators.

Never wear headphones while riding as they impair your ability to hear traffic.

Become familiar with the accommodations that are available for bicyclists in your area. These include bicycle lanes and routes as well as off
road paths. Take advantage of these whenever possible.
SC Laws Pertaining to Bicycling

10. Pass others with Caution.  Announce your presence.
Pass other cyclists with caution and ONLY on the left hand side.  When passing another cyclist first announce your presence, check for
traffic, announce that you will be passing on the left, and leave plenty of room between yourself and the other cyclist.
Sharing the Path (worded for paths but much of this applies to general etiquette when passing others)

* This list of safety tips is taken directly in part from the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration's Brochure.  
Kid's Bike Safety Tour - a good site for kids to learn about bicycle safety (a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Site)
League of American Bicyclists Better Bicycling Fact Sheets
October 31st - November 6th 2005
Safety Info
Charleston Cycle Fest
Charleston Moves Presents
Printable Version of this Page
CCF Safety Info Here
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