California is one of the warmest states in America, but winter can still reach cold temperatures in many regions. Although fog and rain is most common, some cities might receive snow, slush, or ice. Because of this weather, many cyclists choose to put their bikes into storage for the winter months. However, by learning proper techniques for dealing with the cooler winter weather and slicker roads, you can continue commuting safely while avoiding bike accidents in California.
The California winter season, which is often referred to as the rainy season, lasts from November until March. Most of the big cities such as Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and San Jose receive a lot of rain, while cities further north and areas near mountains receive measurable snow. Some of the largest cities that typically get snowfall include Bakersfield, Santa Rosa, and Redding.
Here are a few tips you should follow if you plan to continue cycling in California throughout the winter months. These will not only help you stay warmer, but they’ll also greatly reduce your chance of being in a bike accident:
1) Time Your Ride: If you’re unsure about the weather conditions, you need to time your commutes carefully. One of the most dangerous times to ride in California is immediately after the rain starts, since it spreads automobile oil on the road before being washed away and causes the pavement to be quite slippery. The roadways will also be slicker in the morning and at night, so ride carefully in order to avoid a bike accident at these times.
2) Walk When Necessary: It is easy to lose control of your bike when the terrain is wet or icy. You need to be careful of metal-grate bridges, manhole covers, painted cement, wet leaves, and ice. If you feel you are at risk for a bike accident, don’t hesitate to walk your bike until you reach a safer area.
3) Dodge Deep Puddles: California’s rainy season brings many puddles to the streets. While they might seem harmless, you need to be careful if you can’t see the bottom. Sometimes puddles are covering up deep potholes and running into one of those could cause a serious bike accident!
4) Wear Proper Clothing: During the winter months, you’ll often need more equipment than usual. As always, you should have lighting, gloves, reflective material, and a helmet. Beyond that, you should add warmer clothing to accommodate for the cold. By adding long johns, thermal socks, and extra shirts, you can be fully prepared for any condition.
5) Be Careful While Braking: When your brake pads and wheels are wet, they’ll take much longer to work. In order to stop safely, you should apply your brakes softly ahead of time so they water sprays off. Pumping the brakes gently will cause your brakes to dry quickly for a smoother stop.
While these tips will reduce your chance of being in a bike accident, nothing guarantees your safety while cycling at any time in any condition. If you are ever involved in a winter bike accident in California and believe you are not at fault, you should contact a personal injury lawyer for a free consultation.
An experienced attorney specializing in bike accidents can help you assess, file, and win your injury claim so you can recover the full compensation the law and circumstances allow.
John Bisnar is a partner at Personal Injury Law Firm Bisnar Chase. The Bisnar Chase law firm has dedicated their practice to victims of serious injuries due to defective products, negligence. Visit the main website at http://www.bestattorney.com or call 888-265-0161
Article Source: Five Ways to Combat Winter Conditions While Biking in California