Roll to School

  • Whether riding bikes with a bike train, scooting as a family, or skating with friends, rolling to school is a great way to propel yourself to school and stay active while doing so! While many of the tips for walking also apply to biking, a few special considerations should be made for those of us coming to school on wheels:

    • Wear a Helmet: Always wear a properly fitted helmet while biking. It is the most important safety gear that can protect against head injuries in case of accidents. Oregon law requires all bicyclists under the age of 16 to wear a helmet, but we recommend everyone wears a helmet whenever biking or rolling regardless of age.

    • Bike Maintenance: Regularly inspect your bike to ensure it's in good working condition. Check the brakes, tires, and gears. Remember the ABC quick check every time before you ride- Air, Brakes, and Cranks, Chain, and Cogs. If you're not sure how to do this, take your bike to a local bike shop for a professional check-up, attend a bicycle rodeo with a repair clinic, or look at PBOT’s Bike Resources on a Budget.

    • Know the Laws: Bicyclists must follow the same traffic rules as motorists. Stop at stop signs and traffic lights, signal turns, and yield the right-of-way when necessary.

    • Use Bike Lanes or Paths: Whenever available, use designated bike lanes or paths. These areas are specifically designed for cyclists, providing a safer environment than sharing the road with vehicles.

    • Stay Visible: Wear bright and reflective clothing to increase your visibility, especially during low-light conditions or bad weather. Equip your bike with front and rear lights for added visibility, even during the daytime.

    • Cycle Assertively: Be aware of your surroundings and anticipate potential risks. Stay cautious around parked cars, as doors can open unexpectedly, and be prepared for sudden maneuvers from pedestrians or drivers.

    • Keep Both Hands on the Handlebars: Maintain full control of your bike by keeping both hands on the handlebars at all times. Avoid using electronic devices or headphones while riding.

    • Avoid Distractions: Focus solely on biking while on the road. Don't text, listen to music with headphones, or engage in activities that may divert your attention from the traffic.

    • Be Predictable: Signal your intentions clearly to other road users. Use hand signals for turning and stopping so that motorists and pedestrians can anticipate your actions.

    • Adjust to the Weather: Adjust your biking speed and technique based on weather conditions. Be cautious on wet or icy surfaces, and avoid cycling during heavy rain or storms.

    • Parking the Bike: If your school has a designated bike parking area, use it. Invest in a sturdy lock to secure your bike properly, and ensure you park it in a well-lit and visible location. Check out PBOT’s flyer on how to properly lock your bike.

    Remember, safety is paramount when biking to school. By following these tips and being aware of your surroundings, you can enjoy a safe and pleasant biking experience every day. Always prioritize your well-being and make responsible choices while on the road. 


    Rolling Resources:

    Portland Bike Bus Map

    Portland Interactive Bike Map 

    Portland Family Biking Guide

    How to Fit a Helmet  

    Biketown for All

    Adaptive Biketown

    Portland Bicycle Shops

    Biking Resources On a Budget  

    Bikes Laws of Portland 

    PBOT Portland Biking Guide