It is now a legal requirement to have front a rear lights fitted to your bike, as well as making sure you’re wearing UV cycling clothing when riding in the dark or when visibility is poor. We suggest that you always make sure you carry another set of lights, just in case your current ones are not working or get damaged.
- Always make sure intentions very clear to people around you
When maneuvering on the road, make sure you look to your left, right and behind you well in advance before doing so. Always check that is it safe to maneuver and make sure you keep your position in your lane so that vehicles can’t undertake you on your left.
- Be well aware when you’re on the left hand side of lorries
Always make sure that you’re keeping a safe distance between yourself and the rear end of lorries. Many lorries have blind spots on their left hand side, which means that an accident could occur if you undertake a lorry without leaving a safe distance.
Normally we say that you should always try to avoid undertaking lorries, because of the high risk of an accident happening, as the driver may not see you in their mirror.
Try to make eye contact with other road users, especially at junctions, roundabouts and side roads. Making eye contact is very important, as it shows you that they know that you’re there. Also remember to watch what’s around you at all times, for example looking out for possible potholes.
- Look ahead of you!
Always try and look at least 3 cars in front of you. We suggest you do this because it will give you enough time to react to any obstructions in the road, or any built up traffic.
- Remember to look over your shoulder
Try and look behind you every 15-20 seconds to see what is going on around you. Also check over your shoulder when moving forwards or away from the kerb and before and after you signal.
- Keep your hands over your brakes
Also make sure you use both your brakes at the same time, and apply pressure evenly when braking. Note that you need to be extra careful when the conditions on the road are icy, wet or if there are damp leaves on the road.
- Watch out for open(ing) car doors
When passing parked cars, try to keep a 1 metre gap between yourself and the car. We suggest you do this, to prevent yourself from getting knocked off your bike by a car door opening.
Make sure that you’re not positioned too close to the kerb. We suggest you keep a 1 metre gap between the kerb and yourself. This is important because it makes drivers spot you quicker and will also prevent someone from over taking you in a dangerous situation.
- Do you need to go on a cyclist training course?
If you struggle to feel comfortable and confident whilst riding your bike on busy roads, we would strongly suggest you look into going on a cyclist training course. You may be thinking that this is just a course to teach you how to ride your bike, but it is much more then that! The course will teach you things like, how to signal on the road, how to keep save when riding, the best clothing to wear in different weather conditions, etc.