Safety Tips for Santa Barbara Bicyclists and Pedestrians

Santa Barbara attracts thousands of visitors every year. Year-round, the city is home to over 89,000 people. Both visitors and residents alike enjoy Santa Barbara's moderate climate, beaches and ample shopping. If you plan to trek around the city on foot or by bicycle, here are some safety tips you need to know.

  1. Make eye contact with motorists. Even when you have the right of way, motorists may not take the time to look for pedestrians. Before stepping out onto the street, try to make eye contact with drivers to make sure they see you.
  2. Don't neglect bicycle laws. Bicycling is common in Santa Barbara, and beach communities in general. Heavy bicycle traffic makes adhering to bicycle laws essential for maintaining safety. Make sure your bike is equipped with the proper functions, like reflectors, and use appropriate hand signals when turning or entering traffic.
  3. Only cross in designated areas. It may be tempting to cross the street in undesignated areas for convenience's sake, especially if you do not see any cars coming. Cars travel much faster than pedestrians and bicyclists and appear without a moment's notice.
  4. Don't drink and walk (or bike). Everyone knows of the dangers of drinking and driving, but drinking and operating a bicycle or even drinking and walking can be incredibly dangerous. Statistically, many of these accidents are caused not by drivers, but by pedestrian and bicyclists.
  5. Wear noticeable clothing during low-visibility. If you plan on being out at night, make sure you wear bright clothing so vehicles can see you. Many bicyclists benefit from wearing clothing with reflectors or flashing lights.

At Lessem & Newstat, LLP, we have represented many pedestrians and bicyclists who have been injured through the negligence and carelessness of drivers. If this has happened to you, contact a Santa Barbara personal injury attorney at our firm for a free consultation to discuss your case.