Here at Cycleplan, we want our customers to love getting out on their bikes – and feel safe while doing so. Therefore, it’s essential to take the necessary precautions. We caught up with Lizzie Deignan to get her top 7 cycling safety tips.
Follow the rules of the road
It might have been a few years’ since you read The Highway Code, but it’s worth rereading the rules for cyclists section.
Get some lights for your bike and use them day and night
First up, lights are a legal requirement, and worldwide studies show that daytime running lights improve safety.
Your front lights serve a dual purpose – to help you see when it’s dark and enable you to be seen day and night. Before you go on your next ride, it’s worth purchasing an extra battery if you don’t have one, so that your lights don’t run down on a night-ride.
Wear bright clothing and a helmet
As well as lights, bright clothing helps increase visibility to other road users. The UK is well-known for its grey days, so wearing something fluorescent or bright ensures that you can be seen by drivers day and night.
It’s also essential for you to wear a properly fitted helmet. If your helmet is too far back, it won’t protect your head.
Respect other road users
This should go without saying, but as a cyclist – you’re a road user. This means keeping an eye out for pedestrians, vehicles and other cyclists. Don’t jump red lights and keep an eye out for animals on the road.
Own the road and be confident
Don’t hug the edges and risk falling in a drain if a car passes too close. Position yourself out from the kerb and make yourself visible.
Protect yourself and your bike
Even if you’re the most confident cyclist, you never know when you might have an accident which winds up in court. Likewise, you never know when your bike might be stolen or damaged. That’s why you must protect yourself and other road users with specialist insurance.
Plan your route
Depending on what you want to get out of your ride, it’s worth planning your route – especially if you’re training. Even if you feel a bit nervous of busy roads, you can ensure that your route includes plenty of open spaces or areas with limited traffic. Sustrans has a fantastic route-planning tool to help you find the right ride for you.