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Be safe and smart on a bike

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By Khalil J. Spencer

Dear Editor,

Returning from a road trip on Monday evening, I was waiting cued up behind another car about to make a right on red from Central onto Diamond. At the last minute, the lead driver stopped short, and I saw two dark shadows zip past on Diamond heading north – bicyclists riding in the dark. The lead cyclist had no lights at all, and the second one had a tiny, nearly worthless and dim light.

Frankly, I’ve been keeping a mental tally lately of nighttime cyclists and have seen about ten lightless cyclists for every one I’ve seen lit up.

Those two riders are probably lucky the driver saw them, as they were wearing dark clothing as well as riding fast. Nearly lost in the backdrop of other vehicle headlights and visual clutter, they could easily have ended up T-boning the car had it not stopped. As far as I am concerned, they would have been significantly at fault through their lack of proper equipment and compliance with the headlight law.

Critical safety items like helmets and headlights can be purchased for what is a reasonable outlay; a decent but not spectacular headlight throwing a 100 or more lumens can be had for a price in the range of $100-$200, esp. if you are willing to surf the web for sales or use your imagination.


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