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The City of Portland, Oregon

Portland Bureau of Transportation

Phone: 503-823-5185

Fax: 503-823-7576

1120 SW Fifth Ave, Suite 1331, Portland, OR 97204

More Contact Info

Bike Safety

Bike Safety Checks

Rules of the Road and Riding Tips

Bike Theft Prevention


Bike Safety Checks

The "ABC Quick Check" is a simple way to remember what needs to be checked on your bike before heading out on a ride. 

A is for AirThe side of a bike tire, with inflation amount shown.

  • Make sure you inflate tires to the pressure listed on the side of the tire (see image)
  • Check for any damage to the tire, especially if they are old or have been ridden a lot


B is for BrakesGood and bad brake lever positioning.

  • Are the brake pads in good shape? Replace the pads if there is less than 1/4" left.

When you squeeze your brakes as hard as you can, does the lever touch your handlebar? It may be time to tighten your brake cables or replace your brakes (see image). 








C is for Chain

Wipe your dirty chain down with a rag.

  • Make sure your chain turns smoothly when you rotate the pedals backward.
  • Is there a lot of grimy gunk on your chain? Wipe the grit off your chain with a rag, then sparingly apply a light oil (that's made especially for bikes) to the chain and wipe off the excess with a rag.


Quick (or Q) is for Quick Release A closed and open bicycle quick release.

  • Many bicycles have quick release levers on the wheels (some bikes may have bolts instead). 
  • Make sure the quick releases on your wheels are all in the closed position (curved in towards the bike).


For more detail on these safety steps, check out "Clearing Your Bike For Take-Off," a simple list from The Portland Biking Guide to help ensure a safe and trouble-free ride.


 Rules of the Road + Riding Tips

Road Etiquette: We're all in this together
When biking or driving, how should you interact with other road users?Portland Green Bike Boxes 

Understanding Portland's Bicycle Symbols and Markings
Learn about some of the most common symbols you will see on Portland's streets and Neighborhood Greenways.

Bikes and the Law 
Links to Oregon Driver and Bicyclist manuals, and specific chapters pertaining to bikes.

Portland Biking Guide 
Tips, techniques and street smarts to make your ride safer and more rewarding. 

Riding in the Rain and Night Riding Tips
Practicing good riding skills and the right equipment can make riding in the rain and at night safer and more comfortable. 

Understanding Portland's Streets
Bike Boxes, Cross-Bikes and Getting Green Lights! Oh, my!