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Mounties reminding residents about bike safety

The RCMP in Grande Prairie is reminding cyclists to keep safety a top priority, as they hit the streets and parks across the city this summer.

Sergeant Shawn Graham says on top of the usual reminders about having proper safety equipment, including helmets for everyone under the age of 18, those who chose to ride on the road have an extra layer of safety to keep in mind.

“You have the same rights and responsibilities as a driver of a motor vehicle as a motor vehicle, and you have to obey the rules of the road while riding your bike on the streets just like you would in a car,” he adds.

Police say having the proper amount of nighttime equipment, including reflective lights and jackets is equally as important for anyone looking to ride on the road.

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Grande Prairie as a municipality doesn’t have a bylaw prohibiting the riding of bicycles on sidewalks or pathways, as can be found in other cities including Edmonton and Calgary. Sergeant Graham suggests that’s something riders keep in mind if they don’t feel comfortable riding on the road but want to get out and about.

When it comes to keeping a bike safe, Graham suggests it’s always best to safely tuck them either inside a home or in a locked garage or shed.

“Our thieves work on crimes of opportunities, so if they see it they can quickly grab it and take off, as opposed to it being locked up” he adds.

He suggests that residents who have bikes should register them with the City of Grande Prairie, as it can often prove a helpful tool when it comes to crime prevention.

“We don’t get lots of bikes that are recovered and we just can’t match them up to owners, because the bike wasn’t reported stolen, and there are no serial numbers, things like that.”

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