Can I see you?

I hope everyone had a great Halloween. I know my kids enjoyed it, maybe a bit too much.

Rhyley is at the age where she wants to get out with friends now, but Regan barely understands what we’re doing wandering around in weird outfits begging for candy. So we split up as a family for the night.

I drove Regan to my folks and a few friends’ houses for some minimal begging, and as I was driving home in the dark, with a bit of fog, I realized how many people are out with no lights, or reflectivity, or bright clothing.

I was being extra cautious due to all the kids, but on multiple occasions it was my second or third check at a stop sign before I saw a group of trick-or-treaters running through the streets. Most of these groups had parents along.

Even the odd group with glow sticks hanging off their wrists were almost invisible.

It got me thinking about how visible I might be when riding at night, or on cloudy days. I have front and rear lights and a reflective jacket, but is that enough?

I often see cyclists who have gone to the trouble to get lights, but then mounted the lights in a spot that is blocked by a tire, or their jacket hanging down.

So, this is my friendly reminder to get visible, and here are a few hints.

Use a bright front light. You’d be surprised how quickly a driver can cut you off from in front if they can’t see you. Even when you see it coming there may not be time to react safely.

Mount as bright a rear light as you can get, and leave it on flash mode. This is the best way to get a driver’s attention.

Mount one rear light on your bike and a second light on your back pack, or helmet. The higher mounting position will be more visible, and having two lights at different flash modes is so visible it’s annoying. Better to be annoying than dead.

Reflectivity is never enough on its own, but it doesn’t hurt, and it can make you more visible from the side when passing intersections.

And most importantly, check to make sure your lights are charged regularly. If you feel extra safe, because of all your lights, but your batteries die half way through your commute, you are in serious danger.

Use your lights in all conditions, day and night. Flashing lights will draw attention even when the sun is shining.

A lot of drivers don’t see bikes on the best of days, so we need to do our best to stay safe, and seen.

Have a great winter on your bikes.

I’m James Durand and I’m Going’ Ridin’…

Just Posted

‘I’m very, very lucky to be doing what I do’

Photographer Boomer Jerritt brings Antarctica to Timberline Theatre Jan. 29

Strong winds up to 100 km/h for parts of Vancouver Island

Wind warning in effect for north, east and west Vancouver Island into Saturday morning

Campbell River resident asking for bottles and cans to help Island stabbing victim

Janelle Guyatt suffered serious injuries during a May 2016 knife attack

RCMP’s use of force in arrest of Island man not excessive, judge rules

Campbell River man high on cocaine led high speed chase through city’s downtown

VIDEO: U.S. Congress to probe whether Trump told lawyer Cohen to lie

At issue is a BuzzFeed News report that about negotiations over a Moscow real estate project

Rookie Demko backstops Canucks to 4-3 win over Sabres

Young Vancouver goalie makes 36 saves to turn away Buffalo

Charges upgraded against mother of murdered B.C. girl

Kerryann Lewis now faces first- rather than second-degree murder in the death of Aaliyah Rosa.

UPDATE: Injured firefighter in stable condition

Kelowna fire crews responded to a blaze at Pope’sGallery of BC Art & Photography on Friday

Rare ‘super blood wolf moon’ takes to the skies this Sunday

Celestial event happens only three times this century

Arrest made after historic B.C. church hit by arson

The fire at the 150-year-old Murray United Church in Merritt was considered a possible hate crime

B.C. dangerous offender in court for violating no-contact order, sends letter to victim

Wayne Belleville was shocked to see a letter addressed to him from his shooter, Ronald Teneycke

Man blames his loud car radio, sirens for crash with B.C. ambulance

Tribunal rejects bid to recoup ICBC costs after crash deemed 100-per-cent his fault

Ferry from Port Hardy to Bella Coola expected to set sail this summer

Its first in-service route will sail in central coast waters on May 18, 2019.

Most Read