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Sheriff, Health Dept. Offer Tips for Cyclists & Pedestrians


As the weather improves, more bicycles and pedestrians can be seen sharing the road with cars. This unfortunately can lead to a rise in crashes.

According to Cayuga County Sheriff Brian Schenck, between 2019 and 2023, there were 59 documented car vs cyclist crashes in Cayuga County. While none were fatal, most resulted in injury.

May is National Bike Month and the Cayuga County Sheriff’s Office and Health Department are offering tips to stay safe while walking or biking.

Firstly, it’s important to be seen, especially at night. Bicycles should have front and back lights as well as reflective strips. Pedestrians should wear bright reflective clothing as well as carry a light if walking at night.

Those 14 and under are required to wear a helmet when riding a bicycle in New York. Even if someone is over 14, it’s still important to wear one.

“If it makes sense to wear a helmet, even if it’s not required by law, I’d highly recommend it,” said Schenck.

Bicycles are also required to have a bell, horn, or other device allowing others to hear you.

Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Coordinator for the Cayuga County Health Department, Joe Mushock, added that when on a roadway, cyclists should move with traffic while pedestrians should move against traffic. Pedestrians should also only cross at crosswalks when possible.

Distracted driving is often thought about in terms of cars but both men say distracted walking or biking can be just as dangerous. Talking, texting, or listening to music while on the road can be distracting and lead to accidents.

Safety is everybody’s responsibility and motorists are reminded to stop at crosswalks and be mindful when sharing the road with bicycles and pedestrians.

For more information on how to stay safe while walking or cycling, visit trafficsafety.ny.gov.

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