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How can you be safe as a winter cyclist?

While they're not always common, winter cyclists do exist. They also have a right to use the roads.

Cycling in winter can be difficult in Ohio, though, especially when slush and snow are shoved onto sidewalks and the sides of roadways. Slick conditions and drivers who aren't expecting to see cyclists can lead to serious crashes.

Cyclists are always at risk on the roads, but winter is a particularly serious hazard. It's cold, the weather can change quickly, and drivers are less likely to expect you to be on the roads. How can you stay safe with these concerns?

1. Take care of warmth, first

The first thing to do is to make sure you're warm when riding. If you're cold, you're more likely to be distracted or to make mistakes that could lead to a collision. Wear warm clothing that covers you from head to toe.

2. Ride in groups

Since winter riding is unusual in Ohio, it's a good idea to ride in pairs or groups. It's harder for drivers to miss groups of people compared with a single rider, which makes it less likely that you'll be hit due to a lack of visibility.

3. Plan a good route

Finally, plan a solid route. Take a route with fewer vehicles and safer roads. Try to avoid construction and take bike paths when you can. This could be the difference between getting into a crash or getting to your destination safely.

These are some tips for winter riding. Be safe out there, and remember to be as visible as possible.

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