Metroparks Meetup: Safe Cycling in the Parks

Metroparks Meetup: Safe Cycling in the Parks
Published: May. 24, 2023 at 7:26 PM EDT
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - With a great weather forecast for the rest of May, it’s a perfect ending to National Bike Month! Also, a good time for some safe cycling reminders.

It’s an old but gold rule: wear your bicycle helmet. Whether that’s in the Metroparks or anywhere else, studies show they make a big difference.

“Wearing a helmet reduces your brain injury by 48%, and serious brain injury by 60%,” said Ranger Michael Makras, Public Information Officer.

He also said to make sure your bicycle is mechanically sound before hitting the trails, “You want to go through your ABC quick check. A is check the air in your tire with a firm squeeze. B, you want to check your brakes and make sure they’re good to go before you get on to it. And C, you want to make sure your chain is good.”

Having rangers on bikes allows them to really reach into the Metroparks and connect with visitors in ways they wouldn’t be able to with regular patrol vehicles.

“When they see us, we always get smiles, we’re happy to see you out here, they say those kinds of things,” Makras told us. “It really brings a sense of safety to them.”

A big part of that sense of safety is simply having help nearby in case something happens. “If somebody is injured, we make sure we carry a med kit in here. We have stuff to basically first respond until EMS gets here,” explained Makras.

The rangers also stressed the importance of looking for signage about where bicycles are not allowed, and following simple park etiquette. “When you’re passing on the left, you verbalize, I’m passing on the left,” said Makras. “You make sure that persons sees you, hears you, acknowledges you, and makes eye contact.”

Anywhere you ride a regular bicycle here in the Metroparks, you can also ride an e-bike. The rangers say that if you’re going to do that to watch your speed and stay alert for anyone walking or riding a regular bicycle nearby.