OHIO COUNTY, W.Va. (WTRF) — With warmer weather finally here, millions of bicycle enthusiasts are hitting the roadways.

And why not? It’s a great way to stay in shape or even a great and environmentally friendly way to get to school or work.

But it can also be a dangerous pastime unless all safety rules are followed by both cyclists and motorists. According to the National Safety Council, more than 1,000 bicyclists died in bike accidents in the year 2020. More than 800 of those accidents involved a motor vehicle.

May is designated as National Bike Safety Month. It’s a time when law enforcement and safety officers remind both bicyclists and drivers to do their part to stay safe.

” Bicyclists need to follow the rules of the road. Don’t run red lights. Don’t run stop signs. Don’t go the wrong way on the wrong side of the road. Don’t use the sidewalk in the middle of the downtown streets where people are walking, be in the roadway. You should wear your helmet. You should follow all the rules of the road for your safety. Don’t pass a bicyclist unless you have the right of way. To do that appropriately, make sure you give them as much room as possible.”

Lt. Josh Sanders. Lieutenant, Wheeling Police Department

Safety officials say to avoid cycling after dusk, since most fatal car verses bike accidents occur between the hours of 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.