Bicycle Safety Tips for Summer

Bicycling is a fun way to exercise and experience the great outdoors. It’s a convenient mode of transportation as well as a wonderful family activity.

May is Bicycle Safety Month and with summer just around the corner, it’s a great time to review some basic safety rules for riding a bicycle.

The latest figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that more than 50,000 bicyclists were injured in 2009 — and 630 died in accidents involving vehicles. The NHTSA offers these safety tips for riding your bike.

About Your Bicycle

Before you head out on a ride, check your bike and

  • always use a helmet, no matter how old you are
  • use a bicycle that is the right size for you so you can control it properly
  • make sure your tires have the right amount of air and the brakes work
  • wear bright colors so motorists can see you
  • get bright rear and front lights

Rules for Riding Your Bicycle on the Street

Bicyclists must follow the same traffic rules as car drivers. When bicycling on the street, you should

  • obey all traffic laws, including stoplights, signs, signals and lane markings
  • yield to pedestrians
  • signal when turning

Also, be alert when passing parked cars as someone might open the door.

Rules for Riding Your Bicycle on the Sidewalk

It is best to ride on the street, especially if there are bike lanes. The sidewalk is fine for children who are not old enough to ride in the street without adult supervision, although some local laws do not allow this. If your child rides on the sidewalk, make sure they

  • are alert for cars entering and exiting driveways
  • stop at all intersections before crossing the street
  • alert pedestrians when coming up behind them, telling them they’re about to pass on their left or right, or using a horn

Next: 10 Bike-Related Recalls to Check Out Before You Hit the Road

Photo: Creatas/Jupiterimages/Thinkstock

10 Bike-Related Recalls to Check Out Before You Hit the Road

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) reminds consumers to check to see if their bicycles, bicycle components or accessories have been recalled before using them.

10 Bike-Related Recalls

1. Bridgeway Bicycles

Hazard: The bicycle chain can break, causing a rider to lose control and fall.

Incidents/Injuries: The firm is aware of 11 reports of incidents, including nine reports of injuries, including lacerations and contusions.

Importer: Bridgeway International of Naples, Fla. Manufactured in: China Sold at: Walmart from February 2011 through July 2011 for about $100.

Description: This recall involves “NEXT”-branded men’s 26-inch hybrid bicycles. The bicycles are red or orange. “Power X” and “Suspension” are printed on the frame. Model numbers LBH2611M and LBH2611M2 are included in this recall. The model number is located on the frame between the pedals.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled bicycle and contact the company for a free repair.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Bridgeway International at (877) 934-3228 anytime or visit the firm’s website at www.powerxbike.com

2. Trek 2012 FX and District bicycles

Hazard: The bolt that secures the seat saddle clamp to the seat post can break posing a fall hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: Trek has received four reports of incidents with one injury involving a broken tooth and lip injury.

Importer: Trek Bicycle Corporation, of Waterloo, Wisc. Manufactured in: China Sold at: Specialty bicycle retailers nationwide between May 2011 and September 2011 for between $550 and $1,100.

Description: Model Year 2012: Trek 7.2 FX, 7.3 FX, 7.4 FX, AND 7.5 FX; District, and 9th District bicycle models: WSD, Livestrong and Disc models. The model name is found on the bicycle’s frame. Consumers can determine the model year by looking at the SKU number stamped on the bottom bracket, which is found near the pedals. If the last two digits of the SKU are 12, the bicycle is a Model Year 2012 bicycle.

Remedy: Consumers should stop riding the bicycles immediately and contact an authorized Trek dealer for a free replacement bolt.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Trek at 800-373-4594 between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or visit the company’s website at www.trekbikes.com

3. Fuji Saratoga Women’s Bicycles

Hazard: The bicycle’s frame can break in the center of the downtube during use, causing the rider to lose control and fall.

Incidents/Injuries: The company is aware of 12 reports of bicycle frames breaking, including two injuries, a head laceration requiring 20 stitches and scrapes and bruises.

Importer: Advanced Sports Inc. of Philadelphia Manufactured in: China Sold by: Specialty bicycle stores nationwide from November 2007 through December 2011 for between $300 and $500.

Description: The recalled bicycles are Fuji women’s cruiser bicycles. The 2008 through 2010 models Saratoga 1.0, Saratoga 2.0, Saratoga 3.0 and Saratoga 4.0 are included. The bicycles are various colors. “Fuji” and “Saratoga” alone or “Saratoga” along with the model number is printed on the frame of the bicycle. Serial numbers beginning with ICFJ7, ICFJ8, ICFJ9, ICFJ10 and ICFJ11 are included in this recall. The serial number is located on the bottom of the frame near the crank.

Remedy: Consumers should stop riding the recalled bicycle immediately and return it to any authorized Fuji Bicycle dealers for a free replacement frame.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, consumers should contact Advanced Sports Inc. toll-free at (888) 286-6263 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the company’s website at www.fujibikes.com

4. Public Bikes 2010 through 2012 Model Year Bicycles

Hazard: The pedals can crack and break, posing a fall hazard to the rider.

Incidents/Injuries: Public Bikes has received 24 reports of pedals cracking. No injuries have been reported

Importer: Public Bikes Inc. of San Francisco Manufacturer: Wellgo Pedals Corp. Taiwan (pedals) Manufactured in: Taiwan Sold at: Public Bikes & Gear in San Francisco and other Public Bikes dealers in 16 states nationwide and publicbikes.com from April 2010 through January 2012 for between $500 and $1,250.

Description: This recall involves 18 models of women’s and men’s Public Bikes. The bicycles are various colors and sizes. “Public” or “Publicbikes.com” is printed on either the bicycle chain guard or the rear fender. The bicycles have a metal “badge” at the top of the down tube with a number stamped on it. Recalled badge numbers are 1-5843, 5845, 12560, 20743 and 20757. The “Apple” model, which has no badge, is also included. The word “Wellgo” is embossed on both the top and bottom of the pedals. All bicycles with Wellgo pedals are included in this recall.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop riding the recalled bicycles and contact Public Bikes or an authorized Public Bikes dealer for free replacement pedals. The recalled pedals have a black spindle, the replacement pedal spindles are chrome.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, please contact Public Bikes toll-free at (855) 840-1400 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. PT Monday through Friday or visit the firm’s website at www.publicbikes.com

5. Specialized 2012 bicycles with Advanced Group carbon forks

Hazard: The brake component housed within the bicycle’s carbon fork can disengage from the fork and allow the brake assembly to contact the wheel spokes while rotating, posing a fall hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: None

Distributor: Specialized Bicycle Components Inc., of Morgan Hill, Calif. Manufacturer: Advanced Group of Taiwan Manufactured in: Taiwan Sold at: Authorized Specialized retailers nationwide from June 2011 through November 2011 for between $1,250 to $2,000.

Description: This recall involves the 2012 Tricross Sport and 2012 Tricross Comp model bicycles. The bicycles are various colors and have the brand name “Specialized” on the lower front frame tube. The model name “Tricross Sport” or “Tricross Comp” is on the top tube.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop riding these bicycles and return them to an authorized Specialized retailer for a free repair or replacement carbon fork.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Specialized toll-free at (877) 808-8154 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, or visit the company’s website at www.specialized.com

6. Chariot bicycle trailers and bicycle trailer conversion kits

Hazard: The bicycle trailer’s hitch mechanisms can crack and break, causing the trailer to detach from the bicycle. This poses an injury hazard to children in the bicycle trailer.

Incidents/Injuries: The firm has received 24 incident reports worldwide, three of which occurred in the United States, involving the bicycle trailers and the conversion kits. No injuries have been reported.

Manufacturer: Thule Child Transport Systems Ltd., d/b/a Chariot Carriers, of Calgary, Canada Manufactured in: Canada Sold at: Specialty bicycle stores nationwide and on various websites from December 2005 through August 2010 for between $400 and $925 for Chariot bicycle trailers and from October 2002 through August 2011 for between $40 and $70 for bicycle trailer conversion kits.

Description: Chariot Carriers convert to strollers, jogging strollers and bike, hike or ski trailers. This recall involves Chariot bicycle trailers and bicycle trailer conversion kits. Recalled trailers have serial numbers from 1205-xxxx to 0710-xxxx (representing manufacture dates December 2005 through July 2010) located the left side on the frame. Recalled conversion kits have hitch arms that attach the carrier to the bicycle with model number “20100503” printed on a label attached to the aluminum tube next to the warning label. Older conversion kits without a label, but with a release push button located where the hitch arm inserts into the carrier, are also being recalled.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled bicycle trailers and bicycle trailer conversion kits and contact Chariot Carriers for a free repair kit which the consumer can install.

Consumer Contact: For more information, contact Chariot Carriers at (800) 262-8651 between 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s website at www.chariotcarriers.com

7. Topeak Babyseat™ II Bicycle Carrier Seats

Hazard: A child can place his or her fingers in the opening at the grab bar’s hinge mechanism. When the consumer lifts the grab bar to remove the child from the seat, the child’s fingertips can be caught in the hinge mechanism, posing a laceration and fingertip amputation hazard to the child.

Incidents/Injuries: The firm has received two reports of incidents including near amputations that resulted in stitches and a crushed finger.

Importer: Todson Inc., of North Attleboro, Mass. Manufactured in: Taiwan Sold at: J&B Imports, REI, Action and Hawley, independent bicycle dealers, distributors and other retail stores nationwide and online at REI.com from January 2009 through April 2012 for between $140 and $180.

Description: This recall involves Topeak Babyseat II bicycle carrier seats with model numbers TCS2100, TCS2101 and TCS2102. Model numbers are printed on the product’s packaging. The gray, plastic Babyseats were sold in three styles: Babyseat, Babyseat with disc brake compatible rack and Babyseat with non-disc brake compatible rack. The racks are used to mount the seat to the bicycle. “Topeak” is embossed on the back of the seat and is also printed on a black foam protector that covers the grab bar. A red locking lever on the side of the blue grab bar locks the bar into place.

Remedy: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled carrier seats and contact Todson to receive a free hinge cover retrofit kit.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Todson at (800) 250-3068 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firm’s website at www.todson.com

8. Bicycle helmets for children and youth

Hazard: Product testing demonstrated that these helmets do not comply with CPSC safety standards for impact resistance. Consumers could suffer impact head injuries in a fall.

Incidents/Injuries: None reported

Importer: Triple Eight Distribution, Inc., of Port Washington, N.Y. Manufactured in: China Sold at: Bicycle and sports stores and other retailers nationwide and online from August 2006 through November 2011 for about $40.

Description: The recalled items are multi-purpose helmets also sold for use as bicycle helmets. Little Tricky helmets are marketed for children and youth, and feature a large Little Tricky logo on both sides of the helmet. They come in one size and in black, white, pink and green. Triple Eight S/M EPS Liner helmets feature a hard black inner EPS foam liner and come in black, white, bone, blue and army green. Sector 9 S/M EPS Liner helmets feature the same EPS liner and come in gray, white, black, blue and green. Both the Triple Eight and Sector 9 helmets have an interior label indicating the size “S/M” for small/medium and a manufacture date indicated as month/year (ex. APR/2011). Only Triple Eight and Sector 9 size “S/M” EPS Liner helmets are affected.

Remedy: Consumers should stop using the product immediately and contact Triple Eight for a full refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Triple Eight toll free at (888) 548-8518 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm’s website at www.triple8.com

9. GT, Giant and Trek Bicycles with SR Suntour Suspension Forks

Hazard: The suspension fork’s internal support tubes can break and cause the rider to lose control, fall and crash.

Incidents/Injuries: SR Suntour has received 12 reports of incidents with the suspension forks, including two injuries involving a laceration and a chipped tooth.

Manufacturer: SR Suntour, of Taiwan and Vancouver, Wash. Manufactured in: China Sold at: Specialty bicycle stores nationwide from April 2011 through March 2012 for between $400 and $600.

Description: This recall involves the following GT, Giant and Trek bicycles with SR Suntour suspension forks. “SR Suntour” and the date code are printed on the back of the fork crown. SR Suntour Suspension Fork Date Codes are CK110301 through CK110731 and are found on the following bicycles: Giant, Models Revel 1 and Revel 1W, years 2011-2012; GT, Models Avalanche 4.0 and Avalanche 4.0 GTW, year 2012; and Trek, Models 3700D and 3900D, year 2012.

Remedy: Consumers should stop using bicycles with these forks immediately and return the bicycles to any authorized GT, Giant or Trek dealer for a free repair.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, please contact SR Suntour toll-free at (855) 205-2453 anytime, or visit the firm’s website at www.srsuntour-cycling.com

10. Bicycle Brake Cables for Road Bikes

Hazard: When the brake cables are installed on Campagnolo® style brake levers, they can detach, causing the brakes to fail and posing a fall hazard.

Incidents/Injuries: The company is aware of one report of a brake cable detaching. No injuries have been reported.

Manufacturer: W.L. Gore & Associates Inc., of Elkton, Md. Manufactured in: Taiwan Sold by: Bicycle specialty shops, sporting goods retailers and Amazon.com and other online retailers nationwide from January 2008 through January 2012 for between $40 and $65.

Description: This recall involves GORE® Ride On® Low Friction System brake cables for road bikes and GORE® Ride On® Professional System brake cables for road bikes. The cables are silver and are available with housings in black, white, blue or red. “GORE Ride-On” is printed on the housing for the Low Friction cable. “GORE Ride-On Professional” is printed on the housing for the Professional System cables. The cables are being recalled only if they were installed on road bikes that use a Campagnolo-style brake lever. The ends, or attachment heads, on the Campagnolo systems have the letters “C” “CC,” or “RO” imprinted on them. The following UPC codes are listed on the back of the brake cable boxes and are included in this recall: 7331324 17926 / 7331324 74912 / 7331324 74936 / 7331324 75148 / 7331324 75131 / 7331324 45202 / 7331324 75162 / 7331324 74912 / 7331324 45066 / 7331324 75155

Remedy: Consumers should stop using their bicycles with these recalled brake cables if they are installed on a Campagnolo-style brake lever and contact Gore for a free replacement cable kit. Gore will reimburse consumers for the repair cost.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Gore toll-free at (888) 914-4673 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm’s website at www.rideoncables.com

To report an incident to the CPSC visit SaferProducts.gov or call the CPSC Hotline: (800) 638-2772

Photo: Creatas/Jupiterimages/Thinkstock

32 comments

Tom S.
.3 months ago

I thought haven’t read such distinctive material anywhere else on-line. Jimmy

Ruadha S.
Ruadha S.3 years ago

Stopping mandatory helmet laws makes them the concern of all taxplayers. To be blunt, you should have to sign a legal paper saying you will never use disability or whatevet, for an accident due to not wearing one. Will a helmet save your life? Not neccessarily. But it can definitely save you from permanent brain and/or spinal damage--bike or motorcycle.
And kids? Oh, yes. Bikes are faster these days, roads are faster and smoother and cars are faster, people more oblivious. I think I might not even want them on a bike.

Sandi C.
Sandi C.3 years ago

noted.

Ryan Z.
Past Member 3 years ago

I actually like the photo used. People wearing casual clothing and no helmets while riding sit-up bicycles that travel at lower speeds. A far better image to promote cycling then seeing a group of Lance wannabes.

You don't need bright or reflective clothing -- just get a good light (front & back).

I won't tell people not to wear a helmet, but I will equally not tell them to wear one. Helmet laws are being debated in parts of Canada -- and I am dead against mandating them. If YOU want to wear one, be my guest.
I never wear one and I've been commuting for the past 8 years (year round) without any major issues. Other then the occasional fall when I started out cycling (riding like a moron), the only issues I've had have been in the past month.
A medium size watering truck passed within inches -- while today an 18-wheeler passed less then a metre...Should I believe a helmet would have helped if I was hit by either?

Anne G.
Anne G.3 years ago

The first thing I noticed is that the people in the photo aren't wearing helmets and the first thing the article talks about is one should always wear a helmet. Not well done.

Bob P.
Bob P.3 years ago

thanks

Edgar Zuim
Edgar Zuim3 years ago

Thanks. Good tips.

Mercedes P.
Mercedes P.3 years ago

Thank you! I should buy bicycle sometime...

jessica r.
jessica r.3 years ago

Thanks for the information about the bicycle recalls. Good to know.

Neil A.
Neil A.3 years ago

I am appalled at thes bicycle failures I would advise people to only buy well made & tyested bikes not cheap Chinese & other imports I have only had UK made bikes which are OK & never had a failure.