Cycling is a great way to get around, and it is only growing in popularity every year. However, one of the problems with it is that it is not always that safe. This is just the price you pay for enjoying a pastime which you love. But nonetheless, there are some steps we can all take as cyclists to ensure our own safety and the safety of other road users. Being a cyclist on the road means being one of the more vulnerable road users. That’s why it is important for cyclists to be extra vigilant when on the roads. Let’s have a quick look at some of the top tips for keeping safe when you’re cycling on the roads.
Follow Laws & Codes
This first point is a really important one, as it is unfortunately often overlooked. What laws and codes there are in place all depends on your local area. However, there are some factors which seem to be common to most laws and codes in most areas. For example, cycling on pavements is almost always illegal – as is riding side-by-side. It is good practice, regardless, to ride single file. That way, if a vehicle needs to overtake you, they can. Certain other laws only apply to certain areas. In some places, it is law to have insurance. However, even if you live somewhere where this is not strictly a legal requirement, it’s still a good idea. Compare cycle insurance here to find yourself a good deal.
Generally, this is the number one rule of the road for any users – not just cyclists. However, as one of the more vulnerable type of road user, it is important to remember to follow it diligently. Do everything you can to be as visible as possible. It is always a sound idea to wear high-visibility clothing, as this makes you more visible in all lights. Remember, too, to go slightly towards the centre of the road if you are going round a bend. The last thing you want is for a driver to come up fast behind you just as you are navigating a tricky corner! It is also wise to have lights installed on your bike, especially if you are to be riding at night.
Take It Slow
Most accidents occur because the cyclist was being a little too ambitious on the road. It’s important to remember that you need to take it nice and slow on the main roads. The slower you go, the less likely any real harm will befall you. Of course, you can’t predict or influence the behaviour of other road users. The only thing you can control is your own behaviour. So remain calm at all times and keep it slow and steady.
Be Aware Of Other Road Users
Last but not least, remember the importance of remaining aware of other road users. This applies in particular to those driving vehicles. These are the users who could cause you serious damage, so keep an eye out for them. Remember to make it easy for them to overtake you – and stay visible. If need be, slow down or stop to allow someone to pass. You may not always receive such courtesies in kind, but you should make every effort to do it yourself nonetheless.