Cycling: How To Stay Safe On The Roads

There is no better way to keep healthy than to cycle. Riding a bike is a great way to test your physical endurance as well as your muscle capacity. Bikes work everything from your cardiovascular system to leg, arm and body muscles, so it is an awesome way to train. The only problem can be safety. No one is saying that you will get hurt, but you have to keep your safety in mind. After all, you’re going to be sharing a road with two ton cars. Accidents do happen, but you can reduce the chances with this advice. It might be the difference between getting home safely and a trip to the hospital.

Never Cycle On Sidewalk
When the roads are so full it is tempting to cycle on the sidewalk. In fact, it even seems like a better option than riding on the road. On balance, there is plenty of space and less chance of getting hit by a car. It’s a good idea, right? Wrong, it is a terrible idea. First of all, you might hit a pedestrian. Okay, they don’t weigh several tons but they can still make a pretty big mess. And, it isn’t all about you as you might severely hurt a person on the sidewalk. Let’s face it, lawsuits have been filed for less. Also, you won’t be able to ride on the sidewalk all of the time. At some point, you’ll merge with the road and that is dangerous. If you aren’t on the road and pop up out of nowhere, a driver won’t be able to spot you. When they can’t see cyclists there tends to be a crash.
Follow Rules Of The Road
The rules of the road do apply to you even if you are on a push bike. You aren’t exempt to the rules just because you aren’t in a car. That would be silly and dangerous, yet there are cyclists that take this view. You should never think you are above the rules of the road because it will end up in tears. As a result, you need to stop at red lights and stop signs; indicate when turning; cycle in single file; and never overtake on solid white lines. Some of them might make you look silly, and indeed you will. But, they will also keep you on your bike. If you aren’t sure what they rules are, take a look at the Highway Code before you cycle anywhere.
Brighten Up
‘Brighten up’ doesn’t mean be more jovial, at least it doesn’t in this post. It actually means in terms of lighting. It is a legal requirement for a car to have lights while on the road, so you should follow suit with a bicycle. Okay, it might not be a legal requirement. Still, you shouldn’t omit bike lights just because it is legal. You have to think about what will make you safe, and lights are the perfect tool. When you ride in the dark there is a chance other motorists can’t see you, or they will see you too late. Lights indicate to them that you are on the road and they should be aware. Lights are a good start, but there are other options. A high visibility jacket, for example, is also effective.

Stay Off The Roads
You are entitled to use the roads. Still, you might want to reconsider where possible. Cars are a big factor for a cyclist, so wouldn’t you want to ride where they are not allowed? If the answer is yes, you can by riding on bike tracks. Lots of cities and towns are investing in bike paths for cyclists due to health reasons, so they should be plenty near you. All you have to do is figure out your route and use them wherever possible. As they are only for cyclists, the dangers are a lot less likely to happen. You have to continue to be alert, but you don’t have to worry about traffic and serrated steel.
Get Cover
Cyclists can also take out an insurance policy. In fact, the number of cycle claims is growing every year as cyclists take their safety more seriously. You might think, ‘how does an insurance policy help me stay safe? It is a good question because it isn’t always clear. For starters, it makes you take it more seriously. When you get on a bike without a second thought you have no worries and a lack of focus. These characteristics lead to accidents. An insurance policy instantly makes you see the dangers. Anyone with sense will treat these dangers with more respect. Plus, a claim helps you get back on your feet. After an accident, you might need money for healthcare or to fix your bike. The insurance money will help you recover, and that is a major health benefit.

Cycling doesn’t have to be dangerous if you know where to look and how to act.  

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