May 19, 2021

As cyclists, we know that the streets are not always designed with us in mind, and every day we have to make sure cars, buses, and trucks see us to avoid accidents. When it's dark it becomes more complicated, so in this post we want to recommend the #P3Community what kind of equipment you should use to be seen and to motivate you to continue riding in a safe way.

There are 3 elements that help us to be more visible: colors, reflectors, and lights; so in the following we will tell you how to take advantage of each of these.

1. Brighter colors

It's important to wear fluorescent colors in the areas of the body that move when you pedal, since the brain tends to confuse the fixed parts (back, head, shoulders) with static objects like signs. While wearing an eye-catching jacket/helmet helps, it's essential to wear fluorescent colors on your legs, knees, and ankles, which are the parts that make the "biological movements" that help drivers identify you as a cyclist.

Fluorescent colors have up to 200% more visibility than the conventional colors and are associated with alert signs. The colors that stand out the most are orange and yellow, yellow being the most visible of the 2.

Examples of equipment that should be fluorescent:

  • Windbraker/jacket
  • Shoes
  • Harness
  • Vest

2. Reflectors

Even though fluorescent colors get the most attention from cars, those aren't visible at night, so it's important to complement them with reflective elements that take advantage of car and street lights. Just like color elements, they should especially go on the parts of the body that move, and they should ideally be from the waist down, since the headlights of cars light up this area.

Depending on your state and county laws, it's required to wear reflectors or have some sort of reflectors on your bike when it's nighttime . Check with your local laws to make sure your reflectors are up-to-standard.

Recommended reflective accessories:

  • Ankle straps
  • Vest
  • Leggings/pants

3. Lights

It's simple: by law, the front light should be white, the back red, and both should be fixed. The front light should ideally go on the head tube or the handlebar of the bike, while the back light should go on the back of the seat post. Putting lights on bags and clothes can seem useful, but with movement it's likely that they will end up moving and getting out of sight. Lights on helmets also sound like a good idea, but the truth is that they can make it harder for other cyclists to see so it's not something we really recommend.

The elements that we share are complementary to each other, so they should be worn together. They are very common and you can find the majority of them at any bike shop, we will be getting some in our store soon.

It's very important to point out that bicycles are vehicles with low visibility and one of our responsibilities as cyclists is to make ourselves as visible as possible, we don't underestimate the amount of accidents that happen day to day because of this. We want riding bikes to be safe for everyone and as a society we have the job to look out for each other, share spaces, and educate us and others.

We want to continue writing educational content for our community, did this post help you? What other topics would you like us to post? Comment below!

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