The definitive guide to safer cycling is a four part series that offers crucial information on important cycling safety statistics as well as helpful tips and advice on how to stay safe whilst cycling at night, during the winter and in any other less-than-ideal situation written by Michael Morris.
Part 2 offers tips for safer cycling including 6 ways to avoid road collisions.
A great way to making sure you can better protect yourself is by:
- Keeping up-to-date with the Highway Code and how it particularly applies to cyclists
- You should always be alert when cycling, not taking anything for granted
- Display your intentions early by signalling and always look and double check before stopping, turning or riding off from start
- Avoid cycling too close to parked cars, there is the risk of the driver opening the door without looking
- Never cycle on the path as this could result in a £30 fine
- When cycling on joint cyclist and pedestrian paths announce to people when you are approaching
Six ways to avoid road collisions
Many cyclists already follow the above advice, they are intended as general guidance, but here are six practices that any cyclist should implement when cycling to make sure they are safe.
Keep away from busy streets
Cyclists can often make the mistake of sticking to the same roads they would when driving. Although this makes sense because you are familiar with the route, those roads are the same roads that all motorists take and therefore there are more vehicles to contend with and a greater risk of being caught up in a collision.
Remember to use your lights
Cyclists should have lights fixed to their bike, especially when travelling in the early morning or late at night. It is shocking how hard it is to see a cyclist when sitting or driving a vehicle so why would you take the risk of cycling at night without lights?
Don’t be afraid to use the whole lane
Staying to the left of the road is normally a wise decision, however, there are certain times when being greedy on the road can keep you safe.
- To stop vehicles overtaking on narrow roads
- To avoid being hit by the opening of a car door
- In slow moving traffic, so you’re easily visible to all
- Always signal your intentions
Signalling your turns is very crucial when cycling in case a car is approaching and tries to overtake as you are turning. When cycling make sure to signal early so vehicles around you are aware of your movements.
Ditch the music and mobiles
It is advised to avoid wearing headphones and keep your mobile phone away at all times to ensure that you are not distracted in the slightest.
Cycles as if you’re invisible
This is not to say wear plain clothes or fail to signal appropriately. This is designed to ensure a motorist doesn’t hit you, even if they don’t see you. By staying out of the way on fast roads you’re more likely to keep safe.
Read the full Tips for Bike Safety in the UK.