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Bicycle Accidents Occur in Winter Too. Here’s What You Need to Know.

Bicycling has seen a massive increase in popularity over the last decade, namely due to its health, environmental, and economic benefits. This is especially true in cities, where riding a bike reduces traffic congestion during the daily work commute. Boston is no exception. Miles of designated bike lanes, new legislation protecting bicyclists, and pro-cycling campaigns have had an immensely positive impact. But what about during the winter months? No Boston winter would be complete without sub-zero temperatures and snow-covered, icy, or slushy roads and walkways. Is winter bicycling safe?

If bicycling was solely a sport, it would probably have a season. And that season probably wouldn’t be winter. But cycling is no longer only a sport. More and more people use the bicycle as their main mode of transportation, and we are all better off for it. That being said, bicycling in Boston in the winter does have some drawbacks. But with the proper safety measures, winter cycling can still be a safe means of transport. If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, contact a Boston injury lawyer today.

It’s All About the Gear

Of course it’s cold, but the cold doesn’t prevent us from participating in other outdoor activities in winter, such as skiing and snowshoeing. As with other winter activities, it’s all about the gear. If you are properly dressed for a winter ride, there should be nothing uncomfortable about it. In fact, the biggest problem is not getting too cold, it’s getting too warm. Dressing for subzero temperatures is important, but a long bike ride can result in overexertion which can, in turn, result in overheating, especially if you’re overdressed. The key is to pay attention to your body temperature, drink plenty of water, and dress in breathable fabrics, such as the newer Polartec gear, which allows you to stay warm without getting too hot.

What About Slick, Slippery Roadways and Bike Paths?

Yes, there is a risk of wiping out on icy or snow-covered roads, but cars have a risk of sliding and crashing as well. It all comes down to learning how to manage your bike to avoid sliding. In addition to safe-cycling techniques, you can also equip your bike with studded snow tires for safe winter travel. In addition, the excess padding provided by winter gear means that your risk of getting injured in a winter wipeout is actually less than during the warmer months. Road rash, for example, is almost unheard of. Also, consider equipping your bicycle with lights. It gets dark early in winter, which means your evening commute may be under a moonlit sky. Lights will help you see the road in front of you, but they will also help motor vehicle drivers see you coming.

Feel the Love

Car and truck drivers may seem a bit “nicer” during winter months as well. If they can’t see the painted bike lane lines, they will likely give you more room, to be safe. In addition, there are less cyclists on the road in winter, reducing the frustration held by some drivers that “the cyclists have taken over the roads!” You are less likely to get honked at or cut off by a driver when the roads are snow-covered or icy. For these reasons, the risk of bicycling accidents actually drops in winter.

Altman & Altman, LLP – Boston’s Top Bicycle Accident Law Firm

If you have been injured in a bicycling accident, the skilled injury team at Altman & Altman, LLP can help. We have been protecting the rights of accident and injury victims for more than 50 years. If you have been harmed due to another’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages. It is our goal to get you the compensation you deserve so that you can get on with your life. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free and confidential consultation about your case.