I’ve been riding a bicycle in Richmond for more than 25 years. During that time I’ve had 2 accidents: I got doored on Lombardy 2 weeks after I moved to the Fan, and I crashed into that brick wall along Oregon Hill one night when I was beyond tipsy. Both of these were my fault, hurt pretty bad, and were a long time ago.
It is very possible to ride safely in the city. I’ve learned a few things along the way that I’d like to share. Please feel free to tack on anything else to think about.
- Stop at stop lights.
- Have lights on your bike at night. The brighter, the better.
- Be predictable. It helps other cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers to be around you.
- Assume that no one sees you. It’ll save your ass one day when that car pulls out in front of you.
- Ride on the road and with traffic.
- Slowdown on the sidewalk. If you’re riding on the sidewalk (which is your legal right), be super aware of curb cuts, know that turning cars can not see you and do not expect you to be there, and give pedestrians the clear right-of-way.
- Know when you shouldn’t be riding. I’m not sure how a DUI works on a bike, but whatever that is, know your practical limit.
A version of “How to ride your bicycle in Richmond” was first published on Fan of the Fan in August 2013.