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Watch out for these hazards when bicycling in Palm Springs

The beautiful winter weather in Palm Springs draws people outside. Some ride in their cars with the top down, some walk and some ride bikes. Bicycling has increased in popularity as a stylish form of transportation, especially in Southern California.

If you are joining the ranks of people cruising down the street on two wheels instead of four, be aware of these hazards you may face to prevent getting into an accident with a motor vehicle.

Right turns

Whether you are on the sidewalk, in a bike lane or on the road, you are at risk of a car hitting you when it turns right, shares the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center. Drivers do not always look right before turning in that direction, sometimes only focusing on oncoming traffic from the left.

Watch for turn signals or vehicles slowing down near intersections, parking-lot entrances and driveways. Stop and make sure the driver sees you before proceeding.

Passing vehicles

Even without turns, cars and trucks are dangers because they often do not know how to share the road with cyclists. They may not give you enough room and then hit you when passing you by. 

Parked vehicles

Even vehicles that are not moving present a risk. Drivers and passengers opening their doors may not see you or even look before getting out. Be careful when riding past parked cars so you do not run into an open door.

Road conditions

Cars are not the only hazards to bicyclists. Poor road conditions can be just as dangerous. Potholes and debris can cause you to lose control of your bike and crash. Try to find safe routes when traveling.

If you cannot avoid poorly maintained roads, slow down so you can better notice cracks, holes and obstructions. Be sure not to keep your eyes down the whole time, though, so you can still pay attention to the rest of your surroundings. 

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