When a cyclist goes out on the road, amongst the most dangerous problems they face are reckless and careless car drivers. Indeed, many of the accidents and deaths of cyclists are caused by road users not paying attention to those around them or just being generally abusive. To help you (and perhaps potentially save your life) here are some cyclist safety tips for sharing the road with car drivers.
Car users have blind spots when they drive. This means they could change lanes or swerve without noticing you’re nearby. This can result in serious traffic accidents and life or death situations for you. In order to avoid being caught in a driver’s blind spot, ensure you ride where they can see you. Wearing high vision vests or bright coloured helmets may also help in letting the driver know you’re there.
Opening car doors
Car drivers are quite careless when it comes to opening car doors without looking to see who might be approaching. The best way to avoid this is to ensure you keep a good space between you and parked cars when you ride.
No space to ride
You may find yourself close to hitting the curb when riding around some cars. To avoid these frustrating and dangerous situations, it’s best to wait for the offending car to move on before continuing to ride. The risk is too great if you try to ride beside it.
General road rage
Unfortunately, some altercations with drivers can lead to road rage. Being behind the wheel of a big vehicle can make some drivers feel more entitled to take up space on the road than you. Whether it is swearing, physical or verbal harassment, road rage can be dangerous and distracting for a cyclist. If you find yourself caught up with an aggressive driver, it is best to ignore them and not to get involved. However, this may be difficult if you’re pursued by a driver or repeatedly harassed. Some riders have mounted go-pro cameras on their bikes or helmets to record driver actions. This is the best way to gather evidence if you’ve been threatened or physically assaulted.
Being a cyclist doesn’t mean you’re less worthy of your place on the road than a driver. But safe commuting takes compromise and understanding on both sides. Keep these cyclist safety tips in mind next time you head out on your bike and ensure that you are prepared for anything.
Need more information about cyclist safety? Call the team at Hoffy Cycles today on (07) 3269 1213.