May is National Bike Month, a Campaign to Promote Biking

Thousands of miles of biking trails loop their way across every region of Louisiana, according to Explore Louisiana

It’s no surprise that walking and bicycling are becoming increasingly popular modes of transportation across the state. With the increase in activity, however, comes a troubling trend. Louisiana ranks as the second most dangerous state for cyclists with a rate of 4.5 bicyclist deaths per 100,000 people. 

And the trend is not just bad in Louisiana. The number of U.S. cycling fatalities has hit a multi-decade high with an average of 19 people getting killed while riding a bike every single week, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration NHTSA.

In 2022, there were 44 bicycle fatalities and 558 bicycle injuries in Louisiana. And unfortunately, bicyclists and pedestrians often have the worst outcome in a traffic crash because of the size and force of a moving vehicle. 

So, what can we do to promote more people riding bikes but maintain safety standards at the same time? 

May is National Bike Month, An Annual Campaign to Promote Biking 

In 1956, the League of American Bicyclists had a goal to showcase the many benefits of bicycling and encourage people to go for a spin. Since then, May has been celebrated as National Bike Month! 

Not only is biking popular in Louisiana, it provides numerous benefits to those who enjoy getting out on two wheels. The League of American Bicyclists offers these advantages:

  • Supercharged physical health: A simple 10-minutes ride boosts your immune system, improves cardiovascular health, and increases longevity.
  • Improved mental health: Biking fosters mindfulness, triggers the release of endorphins and reduces the root causes of depression.
  • Decreased stress and anxiety: Biking calms the mind, improves self-confidence, and elevates your mood.
  • Protecting the planet: Reduce your carbon footprint by leaving the car at home!
  • Saving money: Reduce transportation expenses and car maintenance costs.

Interested in participating in National Bike Month? Here are some ways to get involved:

  • Make a commitment to commute during Bike to Work Week, happening on May 13-19. Nearly 4% of people in New Orleans reported biking to work in 2014 and that number has undoubtedly increased. 
  • Choose May 17 to participate in Bike to Work Day!
  • Join the Make Every Ride Count campaign, which gives cyclists incentives to log their rides through the Love to Ride app. In addition, the app has the potential to make biking better and safer for communities across the country because it generates anonymous data that helps planners make infrastructure decisions based on real-time, crowdsourced information.

Stay Safe While Biking This Month – and Every Month

It goes without saying that we want you to enjoy your bike rides through Louisiana this month and every month. But first, we want you to remain safe! Be sure to follow these bike road rules from Explore Louisiana:

  1. Bicycles are prohibited from riding on Louisiana interstate highways.
  2. Always wear your helmet. 
  3. Ride on the right and always ride with traffic. If you’re in a group, ride single file. 
  4. Look and signal before turning. Use hand signals to warn other cyclists and vehicles of your intentions. If you stop, get completely off the road. 
  5. Don’t follow too closely. Keep at least one bike length between riders.
  6. Ride defensively. Always be aware of other riders, vehicles, and pedestrians. 
  7. Obey all traffic laws. Stop at stop signs and lights, and obey one-way streets. 
  8. Do not ride before daylight or after dusk unless you have the proper lights on your bike. 

If you have been injured in a traffic accident and you wish to discuss the specifics of your case in a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer, please contact us today.