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Cycling in the snow is difficult, but not impossible

Photo of Christopher Seleski

Many people find that they still want to jump on a bicycle and ride during the snowy months of the year. While some people might do this for fun or fitness, others do this because it is their transportation to their jobs. No matter what the reason for your snowy excursion, you need to be sure that you are cycling safely to avoid being injured.

Getting ready to ride in the snow and ice means you need to do more than just bundling up to protect yourself from the elements. Here are some important safety tips that you must consider when you are heading out on bikes during these frigid months.

Let some air out of your bike’s tires

You need to ensure that your tires can get a grip on the road. This is a key to being able to remain upright on your bicycle while you are riding. Reducing the pressure in the tires will widen the tire out a bit to allow it to grip better. You can try this out to see if it works for your needs. Make sure that you don’t let too much air out of your tires because you could have a flat, which would be a bad deal in the snow. You might want to upgrade to a cycle with mountain bike tires. Tires that are too skinny can sink in the snow without ever giving you traction.

Check the bike’s structure

The salt and snow are difficult on the bike’s components. You need to make sure that you clean it off regularly and check for signs of wear on the structure. This includes checking the pedals, chain, brakes and gears. A bike that isn’t stable and that isn’t working optimally will make it even more difficult to ride in the snow.

Watch others on the roads

Other people on the road might be the biggest hazard you face when you are bicycling during the winter months in New York. You need to keep an eye on the drivers who are on the roads because they might not be driving with bicyclists in mind. Remember that vehicles take longer to stop in snowy weather than in dry conditions. Some drivers might even lose control over their vehicle in this type of weather. Of course, you will need to continue to watch for drivers opening their doors so that you don’t end up getting doored while you ride.

If you are injured in a bicycling accident that was caused by a motorist, you should get medical care right away. You might decide to seek compensation later for the damages.

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