Cycling safety tips
- Be visible. Use lights at dusk and after dark - white at the front and red at the rear. These lights help to make you more clearly defined and visible to drivers. Additional lights include helmet and/or back pack lights. You may be fined £50 if you don’t have them;
- Stop at red traffic lights; ideally in the middle of the designated cycle box.
- Never cycle on the kerb side of any large vehicle at a junction – if you’re in the driver’s “blind spot”, they won't be able to see you if they turn left. Always maintain enough distance behind or in front of any large vehicle so the driver can see you. If you can’t see the mirrors, the driver probably can’t see you.
- Ride away from the kerb, never in the gutter, ride at least a car-door’s width away from parked cars. If you have to ride close to slower moving traffic or parked cars (for example on a narrow road), do so slowly so you have time to react to hazards (such as an opening door).
- Pay attention to what’s going on around you and what other road users might do. Make eye contact with drivers so you are sure they have seen you; don’t use a mobile phone or earphones it will distract you and prevent you hearing the traffic behind you.
- Check behind yourself frequently, especially before changing position on the road. Use appropriate hand signals when making a left or right turn. This attracts the attention of drivers as well as ensuring that you know what is happening around you.
- Don’t cycle on the pavement or the wrong way up one-way streets (unless clearly marked for cyclists).
- Consider wearing a helmet. This is especially important for children.
It makes sense to take a small kit out with you, especially when going for longer rides. Below is a list of the items you should take with you so you can carry out minor repairs by the side of the road. These will usually fit in a saddle bag.
- Spare inner tube
- Tyre levers
- Good quality multi tool
- Puncture repair kit
- Couple of cable ties - useful for attaching things to the bike in an emergency
- Lights - if you are planning to ride in the dark