Safe cycling

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by SonofSid, 5 May 2010.

  1. SonofSid

    SonofSid Active Member

    As a newbie, have had the crap scared out of me a few times by the 'less observant' drivers out there and by the vids I've come across on the forums. Wondered if anyone had links to info about safe riding. E.g. have seen phrases like 'secondary position' (I think it was) so get the idea that there's things I might need to get into the habit of doing.
  2. Gerry Attrick

    Gerry Attrick Lincolnshire Mountain Rescue Consultant

    Invest a few quid in this. It will be money well spent.
  3. GrasB

    GrasB Veteran

    Nr Cambridge
    Probably one of the best things you can do is buy a copy of Cycle Craft. It's a fairly comprehensive book & ties in with bikeability (the national bike training scheme).
  4. cyberknight

    cyberknight As long as I breathe, I attack.

    Land of confusion
    Cyclecraft is indeed a good book.

    I think experience is the best tutor as you will get to know what to expect,i always assume a car will pass to close or cut me up so i make sure if i can i have an escape route either by road positioning so i can pull in from a close overtake by riding 2-3 feet ish from the kerb and allowing room to stop if i have to.
    When you hear a car coming behind you glance over your shoulder to see how it pulls out.

    You have to remember that the vids we post here are the bad examples as a vid of a nice overtake is not as fun to watch as a mad scotsman screaming in a high pitched voice :laugh:.
    For every close call you will get a lot of considerate drivers,if we can make our intentions clear and cycle considerately and within the law then our interaction with cars can be a lot nicer.Of course you get the occasional numpty but you can reduce the risks as much as possible .

    Enjoy your ride !!!!
  5. OP

    SonofSid Active Member

    Many thanks. Cycle Craft ordered as recommended, along with Richards 21st Century Bike Book to educate myself in keeping it on the road
  6. xpc316e

    xpc316e Senior Member

    +1 for Cyclecraft.

    Top marks and maximum respect to you Son of Sid: too many people think that just because they are able to balance on two wheels that they have nothing to learn about riding a bike. You have an open, enquiring mind and have sought help and advice - hopefully your attitude will make sure you have thousands of miles of safe cycling ahead of you.
  7. Jaguar

    Jaguar New Member

    Cyclecraft is good, it's just a pity that drivers don't read it: you may well take a good road position, but some of them drivers think you are just hogging the road :tongue:
  8. Gerry Attrick

    Gerry Attrick Lincolnshire Mountain Rescue Consultant

    True. A friend of mine, a non cyclist recently complained to me that some cyclists rode in the middle of the road at the narrowest points and he could not get past. The penny dropped only slowly as I explained why.
  9. Arch

    Arch Married to Night Train

    Salford, UK
    I suspect they are the ones who'd think you were wrong whatever you did. Better to take control of the situation, and know why, and give yourself room to move, than cower and encourage them to overtake closely anyway.
  10. HJ

    HJ Cycling in Scotland

    Auld Reekie
    + 1 for Cyclecraft, with out wishing to be patronising, it can also be useful to have a session with a cycle trainer if you are new to cycling in traffic.

    My own thoughts on cycle safety are here...
  11. briank

    briank New Member

    It's also worth clocking oncoming traffic when you hear something approaching from behind : most drivers will give you ample room if there's nothing coming in the other direction.
  12. decca234uk

    decca234uk New Member

    Once you've read the book and learned some safe cycling skills it's just a matter of experience. Learn to anticipate eventualities. Whe passing parked cars for example watch for a door suddenly swinging open, give yourself enough space to escape if this happens. It's all about staying alert.
    Don't become paranoid about bad drivers. Most drivers are decent human beings who will respect your right to ride on the road and won't do anything to intimidate you.
  13. slowmotion

    slowmotion Quite dreadful

    lost somewhere
    +1 to all posters above.

    When riding, look motorists in the eye at all opportunities. They may see you as a fellow human being, not just a bike with a cyclist on it. IMHO.
  14. Helly79

    Helly79 New Member

    Your Blog is great HJ just read some of it thank you ;)
  15. kewb

    kewb New Member

    i was out on a ride today (maybole area ) on my return journey through alloway i caught sight of a mother and two kids the woman was coaching her kids away from the road and looked shocked ,
    no wonder ,
    less than 8 inches from my back tyre was a quarry wagon skidding because he tried to overtake me and his route was blocked ,
    if that had hit me i wouldnt have known anything about it , i knew it was there but thought it further back (had mp3 on ) , i dont blame the mp3 as the lorry wouldve tried overtaking anyway and i was flat out with tired legs unable to get out its path .

    got off bike for a shorts check , and the woman said she thought i dead , lorry kept going ,
    doubt i couldve done a thing , sometimes crap happens you cant avoid .
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