May is both Bicycle Safety Month and Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month and the Long Beach Police Department (LBPD) reminds those out walking, driving, or riding their bikes or motorcycles to “go safely” and to look out for one another while completing essential activities.
Bicycle Safety Month
“Biking is a great way to get fresh air and exercise, but keep in mind others are staying at home too and have the same idea,” Lieutenant Kris Klein said. “It’s important to keep you and your family safe by remaining aware of your surroundings even though there’s less vehicular traffic.”
LBPD encourages the following tips to help keep everyone safe while bicycling:
- Always wear a helmet and never ride impaired.
- Follow social distancing measures and maintain at least six feet of physical space between other riders and those out walking.
- Be seen: wear brightly colored clothing and have bike lights handy (front white light and rear red flashing light or reflectors).
- Use hand signals when turning or stopping.
- Rules of the road still apply: Bicyclists must travel in the same direction of traffic and have the same requirements as any slow-moving vehicle.
- Keep outside trips to a minimum; they should only be to get essential items or exercise.
Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month
During May’s Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, the LBPD will be conducting proactive motorcycle safety enforcement and education patrols. With nearly 900,000 registered motorcycles in the state, many road users are going places without the same protections as drivers. Motorcycle riders are 28 times more likely to die in a crash than vehicle occupants.
To protect everyone on the road, LBPD encourages drivers and riders to keep the following tips in mind while travelling for essential activities:
- Always check twice for motorcycles. Both your mirrors and blind spots.
- Use your signal when changing lanes.
- Never follow a motorcycle too closely. Always keep a safe distance.
- When at an intersection, allow enough space before turning.
- Always wear a DOT compliant helmet and protective gear like gloves and leather clothing.
- Consider adding reflective tape to your clothing to make it easier for other drivers to see you.
- Keep your lights on at all times, even during the day.
- Don’t assume drivers see you: signal well in advance before changing lanes and watch for turning vehicles.
Lastly, never drive or ride under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. Remember, we are all in this together, even if we are told to stay apart.
Funding for these programs is provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.