We’ve analysed the top 5 behaviours and emotions of both cyclists and drivers and put together 5 top tips for sharing the road safely. What’s more, our ambassador, and Olympic medallist Lizzie Deignan has put together her own top tips for staying safe whilst cycling on the road.
1) Remove the blame
Every cyclist has a story about a dangerous driver, and every driver has a story about a careless cyclist. What we must all acknowledge up front is that it’s not the method of transport that makes a small minority cycle or drive badly, it’s down to an individual lack of care and attention.
Crucially, to make the roads a better and safer place for cyclists and drivers alike, we need to remove the blame attached by each side. The more understanding we all have in sharing the road, the less stressful travelling on them will be!
I think it’s important when you’re driving or when you’re riding that you go out on every ride with fresh eyes and mindset.
You don’t want to already have a fear of cars or a frustration with cyclists. You must see everyone as individuals – whether they’re driving or cycling.
2) Recapture the joy
Perhaps the most unexpected result we found from analysing the thoughts and feelings of over 500,000 cyclists and drivers was how few looked forward to being in the saddle or behind the wheel. Whether it’s commuting to work or going out at the weekend – many suggest that other people on the road make driving or cycling a chore, and that is unacceptable.
For the amount of time we spend doing one or the other, shouldn’t we at least enjoy it? Only by everyone taking responsibility to share the road and be considerate, can we have a situation where we start to recapture some of that lost joy.
It’s about consideration from both sides.
I would encourage cyclists who have lost the joy of cycling because of traffic and aggressive car drivers, that if there is the opportunity to take a quieter route or not go out at rush hour then that’s a good choice – it’s about making choices that are going to make your ride more enjoyable.
3) Stay alert
Whether it’s wearing headphones while cycling, or being involved in a hit and run after losing concentration while driving – we can’t stress enough the importance of staying alert at all times while on the road. Neither cyclists nor drivers want to get hurt or be involved in an accident – so it’s in everyone’s best interests to keep their concentration while sharing the road.
On both sides of the situation, whether you’re driving or cycling, you have a responsibility to stay alert because things can happen in seconds that can be life changing.
You can’t let yourself lose focus for any amount of time. One second can change somebody’s life.
4) Respect the road
It’s an inherent fact that both cyclists and drivers need to appreciate more: just being on the road is dangerous. There are risks attached every time you get in the car or on your bike, so it’s more important than ever not to add to them by fully respecting the road. Stay alert, obey the Highway Code and be safe!
I think this rule applies to everybody.
You might think that jumping lights and not looking properly when you overtake cyclists is fine when you’re in a rush, but everybody’s in a rush, so the rules must be respected by everybody.
5) Get insured
Driving insurance may be mandatory by law, but to truly share the road equally – we think it’s essential that every cyclist has cycling insurance too.
Naturally, we here at Cycleplan want to help, which is why we’re offering all cyclists an EXCLUSIVE 10% discount on all cycle insurance today. Help cyclists and drivers share the road equally with cycling insurance.
It’s very important.
Insurance is there to protect you but it’s also there to make you accountable if you’re in the wrong and that should be the case for both cyclists and drivers.