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Tips on safe cycling needed

Anyone got any do's and don'ts for cycling on the road. I live in quite a built up area. Lots of cars, buses, vans, bad junctions, roundabouts etc. Already nearly been knocked off my new bike cos drivers don't look for you, all they look for is cars etc.

I am fairly new to cycling and having been knocked off previously. I don't want to make the same mistake again. (I will probably never turn right at a roundabout again!).


  • wear bright clothing - not that silky black number -

    lights when needed -obviously-

    get together with mates or tri / cycling club and ride in a group.

    avoid riding during rush hour (unless this is commuting of course)

    you can get small mirrors for either your helmet or handle bars if you want to keep an eye on whats happening behind you.

    ensure you give plenty of warning to other road users when you are going to change position in the road, eg when going round drains or pot holes and want to pull out into the road briefly.

    put the bike in the back of the car and drive out to the sticks for some nice quiet country roads.

    Unfortunately in this country, motorists think they own the roads and that we just get in the way. See similar posts over on tritalk.

  • Matt KMatt K Posts: 16
    The most obvious and most important is to be seen, so if you own a fluroescent cycling top that probably shouldnt be seen outside of the 1980's then wear it dont be scared of the fashion police, also lights (even in daylight) aimed at roughly head height of the drivers so they get an eye full and know your there, (although use discretion with this and dont be dangerous).

    But you can take all the safety measures you like, majority of drivers still won't look out for cyclists. So you have to take the responsibility yourself.

    Watch the drivers inside, not the car.

    So if a car is waiting to pull out, watch the person inside to see if they have noticed you, don't just expect them to know your are there, and always be ready on the brakes.

    The one that scares me the most is the car door swinger, this is when someone steps out of a parked car and opens the door on you, just as you whizz past. So when your passing rows of parked cars try to look ahead and see if anyone is inside, and if they are be prepared for them to swing a door in your face!

    many drivers find cyclists an annoyance, so the ones that do give way and allow you room i always make sure i give them a nod to say thankyou, and let them know not all cyclists are red light running hooligans.

    And maybe one day motorists and cyclists can live in harmony and peace.

    Or get a mountain bike!!!! there ain't no cars in the woods.
  • loonytoonloonytoon Posts: 673
    Don't ride in the gutter...always be a couple of feet out this way drivers have to cross the white line (and most likely slow down abit) rather than just "nipping" past...

    Also has the benifit of hitting/dodging less drains

  • FLaPFLaP Posts: 13
    A good way of being seen is to ride positively what I am trying to say is be bigger than you are - obey the Highway Code, don't jump red lights, wait like the rest of the traffic. When waiting sometimes reposition yourself in the middle or the right if you are turning. when riding round corners use the whole side of the road so that cars will not try to overtake on the bends. Always thank/nod at, give the thumbs up to drivers who acknowledge that you are there, make a point of getting right over to the other side.

    Also get out to the country roads where there is less traffic and if possible ride with other people.
  • When I first started riding a bike last year I made the mistake of "hugging the gutter"... didn't take me long to realise that drivers will simply take liberites and, in actual fact, when overtaking they get closer than ever.... I now ride a good foot or two from the gutter and only pull right in when it is safe and suitable for ME...

  • Oh - and I also concur with the "eye contact" thing... when I'm approaching a junction and a car is waiting to pull out (especially if I'm 'tramming it'), I pull out into the centre of the lane and keep on my guard until his/her eyes have met mine and I KNOW I've been seen.
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