OHIO RIVER TRAIL COUNCIL

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Crossing Railroad Tracks Safely

Crossing Railroad Tracks Safely

Crossing railroad tracks is one of the most difficult maneuvers on a bike. Railroad tracks are very dangerous to cross on a bike especially when they are wet.

The easiest type of railroad tracks to cross on a bike are ones that are perpendicular. When crossing perpendicular tracks, slow down, stop pedaling, and raise your butt slightly off the saddle. Coast over the tracks keeping your bike straight up and down. Railroad track crossings can be old and can easily cause a flat tire from the rail or supporting wood, metal, or concrete structure. Taking your butt off the saddle and absorbing any bumps with your legs and arms will help avoid flatting.

The hardest type of railroad tracks to cross on a bike are the ones that are at an angle. This type of crossing is more likely to cause a fall on a bike. If you ride across them at an angle, particularly while wet, the wheel will be in contact with the track for an extended period of time and will cause your wheels to easily slide out. The safest way to ride across angled railroad tracks is to not cross them at an angle. Simply ride further to the right or left so you can approach them at a 90-degree angle. Then cross them as you would a normal set of tracks perpendicular to you. Of course, the best way is to dismount and walk across the tracks with your bike.

Single Bicycle Crashes at Skewed Rail Crossing

How to Safely Cross Railroad Tracks

How to Properly Cross Rail Tracks on your Bike

 
 

Historical Images

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