Bicycle Safety in Chicago

A recent article in the Chicago Sun-Times: ” Chicago’s Lakefront Trail: A path to danger” has pointed out the need for bicyclists to exercise caution when riding on bikepaths and multi-use recreational trails. Statistics show that bicycle collisions happen almost three times as often on paths as on streets. Chicago’s Lakefront Trail is one of the busiest multi-use trails in the United States. The trail is used by bicyclists, runners, beach-goers, in-line skaters, sightseers and even Segway riders. The crowded trail can be hazardous to bicyclists.

Other dangers on the Lakefront Trail that bicyclists need to be aware of include intersections where motorists who are entering lakefront parks fail to yield to trail riders, narrow sections of the trail that can become choke points, sharp turns, some of which are difficult to see around, and sand, ice, or snow on the trail. Riders should slow down if they encounter any of these situations.

Bicyclists should wear a helmet every time they ride. Seventy-five percent of all bicycle-related injuries and deaths involve the head, In a crash, helmets can cut the risk of head injury by up to eighty-five percent.