Safety & Security


Safe Riding Tips

  • Obey all traffic control devices and routing signs.
  • Stop at all red lights and stop signs.
  • Yield to pedestrians.
  • Maintain a safe stopping distance behind moving cars.
  • Do not pass vehicles on the right.
  • Walk your bike across streets and intersections.
  • Be courteous to pedestrians, motorists, and other bicyclists.
  • Avoid traveling too fast down hills or on rough or slippery roads.
  • Ride with traffic, not against it. Use hand signals to communicate with motorists.
  • Wear a helmet.  

The League of American Bicyclists offers a series of educational videos covering a wide range of topics from how to choose a bicycle to proper lane positioning (as shown above). Feel free to check them out for bike safety tips!

Security Tips

  • Lock your bicycle every time it is left unattended—even if you’ll only be gone for a minute.
  • Secure your bicycle to a rack with a high-quality U-lock and a case-hardened chain. A cable lock alone isn’t strong enough.
  • To lock your bicycle properly, place the chain through the bike frame and through one or both wheels, then wrap the chain around a bike rack.
  • Park your bike in a well-lit area.

Maintenance Tips

ABC Quick Check:

  • Air - Did you know bike tires can lose pressure after just a week of sitting still? To avoid flats from under or over inflating, your tires should have the appropriate amount of air in them as specified on the rubber sidewall of your tires.
  • Brakes - Make sure your breaks work and engage properly with the wheel. Rubber brake pads should be replaced when you can no longer see the ridges on the rubber surface that contacts the tire. Disc brake pads (resin) are durable but should be changed after 500-700 miles of riding. Pay attention to any sounds your bike makes when it brakes to troubleshoot issues.
  • Chain - Check your chain to make sure it isn't rusted in place or stuck when trying to pedal through. Applying a few drops of chain lube is a quick and easy way to do regular maintenance.
  • Quick - Make sure all of your quick release levers are in the locked position on your bike to keep parts in place!

Visit the League of American Bicyclists website to learn how to perform a basic bike check.

Winter Biking

Visit the Bike Den for a cold weather riding plan.

  • Layer like you're going skiing. Gloves and face masks make a world of difference.
  • Bike slower and cautiously. Quick movements often cause you to lose balance in icy conditions because of the loss of traction.
  • Visibility is key.
  • Thicker tires are better for slicker conditions. Consider changing the tread on your tires to something gripper like you see on mountain or gravel bikes.
  • Keep your tire pressure at the minimum recommended for your tire (as labeled on your rubber tire sidewall) to increase tire surface area.

Contact the Office of Physical Plant's Service Desk at 814-865-4731 or email [email protected] if you're having trouble accessing a bike rack due to snow.

Having trouble accessing a bike rack due to snow? Please contact the Office of Physical Plant's Service Desk at 814-865-4731 or send an email to [email protected].