When winter weather moves into Pittsburgh, temperatures drop and snow is seemingly always in the forecast. While this change alters the life of many residents throughout the area, some continue to commute to and from work on their bicycle.
As someone commuting on their bicycle during the cold winter months, here are several tips to follow:
- Keep an eye on the sky: Is there snow in the forecast? How about rain or ice? Or maybe fog? Cold temperatures are one thing, but precipitation is a different beast entirely. For instance, icy roadways require special caution to avoid a situation in which your tires skid out from under you.
- Wear the appropriate gear: Regardless of the time of year, you’ll want to wear a helmet at a minimum. During the winter months, it’s essential to wear warmer clothing, without restricting your movement.
- Watch for distracted drivers: Cold weather can distract drivers in a number of ways. Maybe someone is on their phone to check the forecast for the drive home. Or maybe someone is struggling to see the road ahead because they didn’t clear their windshield. If you spot a distracted driver, take special caution to prevent trouble.
- Pedestrians are dangerous, too: Winter weather has a way of distracting pedestrians, as they only care about one thing: getting to their destination as quickly as possible. This can cause them to make mistakes, such as walking in a bicycle lane or neglecting to look twice before crossing the road.
- Get off and walk your bike: If road conditions turn dangerous while you’re on the saddle, jump off your bike and walk it to your destination. Sure, it may slow you down, but safety always comes first.
The negligence of a driver can cause a bicycle-car accident at any time of the year. If this happens, you must obtain immediate medical treatment at a local facility, as it’s the best way to stabilize your health, understand your injuries and implement a recovery plan.
Once you have a clear idea of your current health and future outlook, learn more about the cause of the crash, your legal rights and anything you can do to seek compensation from the driver who caused the accident.