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Cyclical Safety: What Goes Around Comes Around

There’s nothing more important for cyclists than to stay safe. Riding on the roads at high speeds without much protection is potentially fatal. At least 600 people die per year as a result of an accident. When it’s a hobby, your life should never be on the line.

Staying safe isn’t as straightforward as putting on a helmet and arm and knee pads. To limit the damage, cyclists have to act accordingly and stick to the rules of the bike. Otherwise, what goes around comes around and a nice autumn jaunt could turn into something nasty.

So, below is how to be responsible as a cyclist.

Act Like A Car

Because you’re on a bike, it’s tempting to think the rules of the road don’t apply. You don’t have to stop for red lights because you’re not a car. Well, newsflash: yes you do. When you use the roads to ride a bike, it’s essential that you follow the Highway Code or else you could cause a crash. The best way to do this is to act like a car. Show people where you are turning, slow down at intersections and stop at the lights. That way, a two-ton vehicle won’t hit you as you’re ambling by.

Don’t Switch

One thing that is tempting on a bike is to switch from the roads to the pathways. Please don’t do it as it can cause chaos. For one thing, some pedestrians have no idea a speeding cyclist is coming their way. And, they will quite rightly speak to an injury lawyer about compensation. As a result, you might need to schedule your consultation now for defense purposes. Also, there are too many people and not enough space for heavy-duty bicycles. You can’t have your cake and eat it so stick to the roads and bike paths.

Be Visible

It’s not summer any longer and the sun sets a lot quicker than usual. In fact, there might not be any sunlight past 6:30 p.m. The reason this is important is that lots of people exercise after work, around 6 to 7 pm. Whether you act like a car or not won’t help if you’re not visible. Start with the bicycle by attaching a flashing headlight on the front on the back. Then, focus on the driver. Wearing an aluminous, high-visibility jacket will ensure motorists see you in the dark. Where possible, avoid unlit routes.

Stay Alert

Unlike a driver, you can’t mess around with electronics. It’s too fiddly and you’ll lose control. But, you can lose yourself in your own head and drift off. Although this part of the appeal, it’s also very risky. Your eyes might be on the road but no one is home upstairs and that can lead to collisions. By all means, take in the scenery whenever possible yet avoid glancing at people and reading billboards in built-up areas. Stay alert and maintain your concentration and you’ll be as safe as a house.

Cycling safety is about knowing and sticking to the rules and not thinking you’re above the code.

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