Let’s make Ottawa’s roads safer…a quick reminder of some of Ottawa’s cycling safety rules.

A quick review of bicycle safety rules. bicycleaccidentbenefits

Ottawa’s cycling culture continues to grow at a rapid pace. With the introduction of bike new bike lanes, cycling safety education, new safety measures such as Bill 31, Making Ontario’s Roads Safer, Cycling Safety Awareness Program (CSAP)  and a general awareness less, it seems that there are more and more cyclists on Ottawa’s roads and many cycling infrastructure improvements .

Cycling rules in Ottawa

In Ottawa, cyclists are allowed on mixed-use pathways; however cyclists should follow these safety guidelines:

  • Where there is one, always stay on the right of the yellow centre line
  • Pass other cyclists safely
  • Notify other cyclists when you are passing. Use a bell or notify them with your voice.
  • Always drive in control.
  • Make sure you are always well lit.  Ride carefully, especially when it’s dark.
  • Use a bicycle light.

Cycling on the sidewalk is prohibited by the City of Ottawa Traffic and Parking By-law except where it is permitted by official or authorized signs.

Cyclists under 18 must, by law, wear a helmet in Ontario.

Cyclists must have an alarm, bell or horn on their bike.

When cycling at night or in low visibility conditions, you need a white front light and a red rear reflector.

Bicycles must also have 25 cm of white reflective tape on the front forks and 25 cm of red reflective tape on the back forks .

On pathways, always stay under the courtesy limit of 20 km/h.

Cyclists wear a helmet (required if under 18 years old)

Ottawa Police are currently conducting an educational, awareness-building campaign that focuses on the new one-metre rule, which came into effect in Ontario in September 2015.  Drivers are expected to leave at least one metre between themselves and a cyclist, when passing. Failure to do so could result in a fine.

The more drivers and cyclists work together to make our city a safe place to drive and cycle, the better we can make our city.

 


Ottawa Police safety blitz to focus on Ottawa cycling safety and what you can do to avoid a bicycle accident.

Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth.

Our Ottawa Police will be conducting a safety blitz for Ottawa cyclists .  They plan to mainly target Ottawa’s downtown core most of next week.   Specifically they will be looking to remind cyclists ..

– to stop at all stop signs and red lights,

-use proper hand signals,

-exercise caution when crossing intersections.

-shoulder check and signal all lane changes, turns and stops.

-be bright and visible at night

-share the road with other cyclists and drivers.

-recognize and be mindful of blind spots around cars, trucks and buses.

-cycle on the right side of the road.

-ride only in the designated direction on one-way streets.

-stay off sidewalks.

-wear a helmet if under 18.

-have a bell, gong, or horn on your bike.

Did you know that approximately  7,500 cyclists are seriously injured each year in Canada? Did you also know that most bicycle injuries and accidents occur during the afternoon rush hour ?  18% of cyclists killed in traffic accidents are  under the age of 16 ? 34% of cyclists who were killed were hit by a vehicle in the dark ?

(Statistics Canada)

These statistic are alarming.  As an Ottawa bicycle accident lawyer I urge both drivers and cyclists to be aware of the safety steps that can be taken that may very well save a life.  Both drivers and cyclists need to be extremely aware of one another and share the road accordingly. Ottawa has seen our share of tragic cycling accidents in the past few years , despite how many wonderful paths and what a great cycling culture we have here in Ottawa.  If you are out there on our roads as a cyclists or drivers, please do everything you can to make it a safe ride for everyone.

Let’s reduce Ottawa cycling accident and continue to work on our great cycling culture that we are so fortunate to have in our city.

 

 


Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth: Tips for avoiding Ottawa bicycle accidents,

Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyers…Sadly, 200 cycling accidents happen in Ottawa every year.  Citizens for Safe Cycling is promoting bike education throughout Mountain Equipment Co-op’s Bikefest at LeBreton Flats tomorrow. In 2010, 5 Ottawa cyclists died on their bicycles and cyclists in Ottawa are 10 times more likely to be involved in an accident than cars. Citizens for Safe Cycling explained one of the most common accidents on Ottawa’s roads is when drivers make a right turn without looking for cyclists and cut them off.

The following tips were provided by Citizens for Safe Cycling when it comes to safe cycling in Ottawa:

Obey the law: red lights, stop signs and the rules of the road.

 Don’t ride on sidewalks.

 Don’t ride the wrong way down a one-way street.

Signal: “Be sure to signal all of your intentions in advance, that way motorists and other cyclists will know what you’re doing.”

Be aware: Give yourself space to maneuver and shoulder check to make sure you know where the other vehicles are.

Prepare your ride: Wear a helmet.  Make sure your bike is in good condition.

Know your route: Use Ottawa’s bike maps

MEC Bikefest is happening tomorrow at LeBreton Flats from 11 am to 4pm with exhibitor displays, bike demos, safety education, workshops and family fun.

Have fun and safe cycling….

-Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

 


Summer Cycling Safety Tips with Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth

bicycle accideOttawa Bicycle Accident Lawyer, Cycling Accidents Ottawa .We all want to be out on our bicycles cycling around Ottawa.  There is much to see and do and getting out on a bicycle is one of the best ways of seeing our city. Of course, it is part of a healthy lifestyle, but bicycling also helps the environment. It’s important, as a cyclist in Ottawa, to be always be aware of your surroundings. Make sure your are visible and take all necessary safety precautions. As an Ottawa bicycle accident lawyer, I meet regularly with people involved in bicycle accidents who suffer very serious personal injury such as brain injury, head injury and broken bones.

In 2009, according to Transport Canada,  there were a total of 41 bicycle accident fatalities, and 435 serious personal injuries related to bicycle accidents. The Canada Safety Council recommends for all bicyclists to wear an approved bicycle helmet, which can prevent up to 88 % of brain injuries. Simply put: A bicycle helmet can save your life, so why wouldn’t you wear one? There are many bicycle safety measures you can take to help keep yourself and your children safe:

1. Always wear a helmet.

2. Pay attention and avoid distractions.

3. Obey the laws and road safety rules.  Cyclists have the same rights and duties as other drivers and need to follow the same traffic laws.

4. Be predictable — ride in a straight line, don’t swerve over sewers or bumps in the road, this will increase your chances of a collision with a vehicle.

5. Properly signal all turns and check behind you before completing a turn or changing lanes.

6. Come to a complete stop at stop signs and red lights.

7. Stay visible. Be careful around parked cars and ride where drivers can see you.

8. Use lights at night and wear bright colored clothing.

9. Be alert -Try to watch for the next move of drivers, pedestrians and other cyclists.

10. Watch for debris, potholes, grates or any road obstacles.

11. Make sure your bicycle is in good working order. Make sure your tires don’t need air, brakes must work, chains should run smoothly, and quick release wheel levers must be closed.

As a driver, there are many steps you can take to avoid a bicycle accident

1. Respect cyclists’ right to share the road and responsibilities as motorists.

2. Obey the speed limits.

3. Come to a complete stop at  stop signs and red lights.

4. Do shoulder checks, and always check blind spots for cyclist.

5. Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and bicycles.

6. Yield to pedestrians and cyclists in crossways.

7. If you plan to turn right or pull into a parking space shortly ahead of a bicycle in front of you, do not pass. Allow the cyclist to pass first.

8. Signal all turns and lane changes well 30 in advance.

10. Only pass cyclists when it is safe to do so.

These cycling safety tips may seem basic but serve as a great reminder to us all.  Ottawa is a wonderful city to cycle in, let’s keep it safe ! We all need to focus more on cycling safety.  There are far too many very serious head injuries and other very serious personal injuries in Ottawa each year as the result of an Ottawa bicycle accidents.  As one of the top Ottawa bicycle accident lawyers, I encourage everyone to have a safe and accident free summer.