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Safety tips for winter biking

There are bikers, and then there are the bikers who commit to riding all year long, even when snow and ice cover the ground. While their determination is laudable, these bikers need to take extra precautions during icy wintry conditions to prevent not only slips and spills, but collisions with other bikers, pedestrians or cars that could result in serious injury or worse. 

The first step in winter biking preparation is to dress warmly and appropriately. Wear layers and keep your hands warm so they are flexible and able to respond quickly to turns, changing conditions and other hazards that may crop up. If it's snowing, wear protective eyewear like goggles or even sunglasses so you're not blinded by potential snow flurries. Wear waterproof, brightly colored clothing so that cars, bikers and pedestrians can see you. And, always, use lights when biking at night. It can also help to use lights during the daytime if you're biking in snowy conditions. 

You can help maintain safety while biking in the winter not just with the clothing you wear, but also with the way that you ride. When conditions are unpredictable and slippery, it helps to use extra caution. Take turns slower, as you may not be able to see what's coming at you around the corner. Braking earlier and/or more frequently than you normally would can also help keep your bike under control and keep you safe from unexpected hazards like oncoming cars or difficult road conditions. In icy conditions, riding slower and using a gentle touch on the brakes can keep you from skidding out or colliding with a person, stationary object or vehicle. 

If you do get into an accident as a winter biker, however, don't assume that it's your fault. While winter biking does come with its own risks, drivers must stay alert for bikers in the winter just as they do in the summer, and they are no less liable for negligent driving because of the season. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can be a great help in getting you the compensation you need if you've been hurt in a winter biking accident through someone else's negligence. 

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