Small, reflective objects which are attached to the bike or clothing to increase visibility in low-light conditions.
Example usage: 'We put reflectors on the spokes of our bikes to make them easier to see in the dark.'
Most used in: Areas with low-light conditions, such as during dawn or dusk.
Most used by: Commuters and recreational cyclists.
Comedy Value: 4/10
What are Reflectors in Cycling?
Reflectors are an important safety feature for cycling. They are reflective devices that help cyclists to be seen by other road users in low-light conditions such as at night or in foggy weather. Reflectors are usually mounted on the wheels, pedals, handlebars, and other parts of the bike to increase the visibility of the cyclist to other road users.
The use of reflectors is especially important in countries with high rates of cycling fatalities, such as the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2019, 857 cyclists were killed in motor vehicle crashes in the US. Reflectors can help reduce the number of cycling fatalities by making cyclists more visible to drivers in poor visibility conditions.
It is important for cyclists to equip their bike with the right type of reflectors. Most bike manufacturers provide reflectors with their bikes, however, it is important to ensure that the reflectors are of high quality and meet the national standards of the country in which the bike is being used. In the US, the NHTSA requires all bikes to have a front white reflector, a rear red reflector, and reflectors on the wheels.
In addition to reflectors, cyclists should also consider using reflective clothing and lights to increase their visibility to other road users. By using reflectors, lights, and reflective clothing, cyclists can reduce the risk of being involved in a crash with a motor vehicle.
The Origin of the Term 'Reflectors' in Cycling
The term 'reflectors' was first used to refer to safety devices on bicycles in the early 1900s. They were originally developed in Europe and later adopted in the United States as a way to make cyclists more visible on the roads at night.
The earliest form of reflectors used on bicycles were simple reflectorized discs, which were made of glass and coated with a reflective material such as mica or aluminum. These discs were usually mounted on the spokes of the wheel and were designed to reflect light from approaching vehicles, making cyclists more visible.
By the 1930s, reflectors had become a standard safety feature on most bicycles, and they were required by law in many countries. Reflectors have since evolved and are now available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors. Today, they are an essential part of any cyclist's safety gear and are often required by law in many countries.