How to stay safe when cycling to work
Fancy riding your bike to work? Find out what steps you need to take to ensure you arrive safely.
Cycling can be a great way to get around and many people are ditching their car for a bike where possible. Cycling is free, it is good for your health and it is environmentally-friendly, plus it can also be good fun when you are exploring somewhere new.
There are many benefits to cycling, but it can be dangerous and you are a vulnerable road user. Read on for a few tips on how you can stay safe while cycling.
Always wear a helmet
First, you should never set off without wearing a helmet. It is not compulsory, but it is advised as helmets can offer significant protection for your head if you were to come off the bike. Head injuries can be mild but they can also be severe and life-changing, so it is not a chance that you want to take as a vulnerable road user.
Stay in cycle lanes
When there is a cycle lane, you should always stay here as opposed to riding on the main road as this will give you a clear space where you do not have to worry about cars. If you are riding in the road, try to avoid hugging the curb as this can actually be more dangerous as it encourages motorists to try and overtake you (you are also more likely to avoid drain covers and debris).
Maintain your bike
You also need to maintain your bikeso that you know that it is in good condition each time that you set off. This will include pumping up the tyres, lubricating the chain, testing the brakes and lights and looking for signs of damage.
You need to be 100% focused when cycling and constantly aware of your surroundings. This means that you need to avoid distractions, such as checking your phone while cycling or listening to music/podcasts.
Make your intentions clear
As a vulnerable road user, you need to make sure that other road users are aware of your presence and your intentions. You should always make clear gestures well in advance of taking action and try to make eye contact with drivers if possible.
If you end up suffering an injury while cycling that is the fault of another road user, you should speak to a personal injury solicitor that will be able to determine whether or not you have a case and work to seek maximum compensation.
Learn the code and ride safely
Finally, you should brush up on The Highway Code to learn how to ride safely and avoid accidents. On top of this, you should always ride safely including keeping both hands on the handlebars at all times.
Hopefully, this post will help you to feel safer on the roads and enjoy the many benefits that cycling can bring.