Safety Tips & Classes

Upcoming Bike Classes

Please email jlawrence@cambridgema.gov or call 617/349-4671 to sign up!
Classes are lecture-style.
Every participant receives one free helmet each year.Rindge Ave
More details here.

Urban Cycling Basics & Maintenance Basics for Youth

  • Wednesday, May 9, 3:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.
  • 449 Broadway, Cambridge Public Library Teen Room
  • Must be a teen!
  • This is a workshop of the Cambridge Public Library
  • Covers:
    • Finding the right kind of bike
    • Route planning
    • Safety equipment, including lights and a helmet
    • Locking properly
    • Transporting small loads or children by bike
    • Multi-modal commuting
    • Rules of the road and safety tips.

Bicycle Maintenance Basics

  • Monday, May 14, 3:00 P.M. to 4:30 P.M.
  • Location TBD
  • Covers:
    • The anatomy of the bike
    • Removing wheels
    • Fixing flats
    • Chain Maintenance
    • Pre-Ride check
    • Seat height
    • Portable tool kit
    • Keeping your bike healthy with preventative bike maintenance

Riding With Families

  • Monday, May 14, 6:00 P.M. to 7:30 P.M.
  • 119 Windsor Street, Cambridge Public Health Department

Bicycle Maintenance Basics & Beyond Basics Drop-In Sessions

  • Thursday, May 17, 4:00 P.M. to 5:00 P.M.
  • Thursday, May 17, 6:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M.
  • 64 Aberdeen Avenue, Cambridge Public Library Collins Branch
  • Basics covers:
    • The anatomy of the bike
    • Removing wheels
    • Fixing flats
    • Chain Maintenance
    • Pre-Ride check
    • Seat height
    • Portable tool kit
    • Keeping your bike healthy with preventative bike maintenance
  • Beyond Basics covers:
    • Basic repair tools
    • Thoroughly cleaning and lubricating your bike
    • Removing both wheels
    • Completely changing a flat tire
    • Pinpointing squeaks and rattles
    • Removing pedals
    • Adjusting front and rear brakes + derailleurs,
    • Dealing with a broken spoke

Riding With Families

  • Thursday, May 17, 5:00 P.M. to 6:00 P.M.
  • 64 Aberdeen Avenue, Cambridge Public Library Collins Branch
  • Covers:
    • Options for biking with children, such as front seats, rear seats, front cargo bikes, bike trailers
    • How is biking with kids different than biking solo?
    • How can I bike with my children when there are no routes with bike infrastructure?
    • How young is too young for children to be with parents while biking?
    • What does the law say for children?
    • How is buying bikes for children different from buying bikes for adults?
    • How do I appropriately fit a child to a bicycle?
    • How do I teach children the rules of the road?
    • What is the Safe Routes to School program?

 

5 safety tips for urban cycling

  1. Act like a car
    Stop at lights and yield to pedestrians.
    Note: It is state law in Massachusetts that you can take the full lane when riding.
  2. Be visible
    Use front and back lights! Wear bright, reflective clothing at night.Cambridge bike shops:
    Quad Bikes (Shepard and Walker St)
    Broadway Bicycle School (351 Broadway)
    CrimsonBikes (1001 Massachusetts Ave)
    Cambridge Bicycle (259 Massachusetts Ave)
  3. Avoid large vehicle blind spots
    Buses and trucks have large blind spots on either side of the vehicle as well as in front and back. Try to stay out of the blind spot, especially at intersections, where a vehicle may not see you as they turn right. If you can’t see the mirrors, the driver likely can’t see you.
  4. Avoid doors
    Try to ride as far from parked cars as possible, typically on the left half of a standard bike lane.Bonus:
    Teach drivers & Uber/Lyft riders the Dutch Reach
    Reach with your far hand when opening so that you automatically turn to look for oncoming bikes and cars.
  5. Passing/being passed
    Pass another person riding on the left (be to the left of whomever you’re passing)
    By being consistent in our behavior, we can avoid crashes.

 

For more tips & detailed diagrams, check out the city’s page!

 

Videos

Street Code

Read the city’s Street Code, full of diagrams and explanations of how to behave while out and about, whether walking, driving, cycling or taking public transit.

Food for thought:

  1. Slow down. The faster you travel, the higher the risk of crash and death. Is beating that yellow light really worth injuring someone, losing your job, or going to jail? Take a breath and slow down.
  2. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Imagine what it would feel like to be in their position. Don’t assume the worst. Maybe they don’t know the rules and norms of the road. Maybe they looked, but didn’t see you. Be the person you want to see on the streets.
  3. It’s not about you. It’s about all of us. We are all trying to safely get somewhere. Let’s go out into the world trusting that we can come back alive and uninjured.