City Services

Bicycle Safety

Why is Bicycle Safety so Important?

Bike riding is a lot of fun and good means of transportation. However accidents will happen. Every year hundreds of thousands of people go to the Hospital emergency due to bike injuries. Some of these injuries are so serious that kids and adults have life altering injuries and many times head injuries. That is why it is so important to wear your bike helmet. Wearing a helmet does not mean you can be reckless, but it will provide some protection for your head in case you fall.

Helmet on, Now What?

Your bike should be the right size for you to keep you safe.

When you are on your bike, stand straddling the top bar of your bike so that both feet are flat on the ground there should be 2.5 to 7.6 centimeters of space between you and the top bar.

  • Make sure your seat, handlebars and wheels fit tightly.
  • Check and oil your chain regularly.
  • Check your brakes to ensure they work well.
  • Check your tire to make sure they have enough air and the right air pressure.

Be Seen, Be Safe!

Wearing bright clothes and put reflectors on your bike. This helps other people on the road see you.

Make sure that nothing will get caught in the bike chain, such as loose pant legs, backpack straps or even shoelaces, plus wear proper shoes such as runners. Sandals or shoes with heels don't grip the pedals. Never go biking barefoot.

Don't wear headphones, because music can distract you from sounds around you, such as a car blowing its horn or an emergency vehicle coming up behind you.

Road Rules

  • Always stop and check for traffic in both directions when leaving your driveway, an alley, or a curb.
  • Cross at intersections. When you pull out between parked cars, drivers can't see you.
  • Walk your bike across busy intersections and follow traffic signals.
  • Ride your bike with the flow of traffic. Never ride against traffic.
  • Don't ride too close to parked cars. Doors can open suddenly.
  • Stop at all stop signs and obey traffic lights just as cars do.
  • Ride single-file on the street when biking with others.
  • Use hand signals so other cyclists and drivers will know what you are doing.

Hand Signals

Use hand signals to help other motorist know what you are going to do.

Left Turn Stop Both indicate a Right Turn

Theft Prevention

Bike theft is a nation-wide problem and Summerland is not immune to this problem. Bicycles are among the most frequently stolen types of property. Most bikes are stolen because:

  1. They were not locked, or

  2. They had been secured with poor quality locks.

It only takes seconds for a thief to get away with your unlocked bike!

Here are some suggestions which may help you in preventing a bike theft:

Cable or Chain Lock

  1. Use a cable or chain at least 3/8" in diameter.

  2. Use a key lock with a 3/8" hardened shackle with heel and toe locking.

  3. Pull up all slack in the cable or chain and make sure the lock is as high off the ground as possible.


  1. Bike with quick release wheels- release the front wheeland include this withthe rear wheel and frame.

  2. Bike without quick release wheels- secure the lock throughboth tire and frame.

ALWAYS Secure your bike to a bike rack or solid object otherwise all a thief has to do is pick it up and toss it into a truck or van... don't let it happen to you!

CHOOSE carefully where and how you park your bike. Choose a well-lit public place whenever possible.

REGISTER your bike with the Summerland RCMP detachment. This provides important information to help recover your bike if it is stolen, and helps the RCMP get it back to you if it is recovered.

REMEMBER that no matter how strong your lock, if you don't use your lock, it won't help. Lock your bike, even if you are only going to be away from it for a minute. This is just what a bike thief is waiting for!

Additional Resources