The British on-line magazine Cyclist has posted an article titled, “10 Tips for Keeping Safe in Traffic” and we think a recommended read. While most who visit our BSF site already know of these, a refresher/reminder never hurts any of us! Though we disagree about their order, here are three of the most important ones in our opinion:
“1. Don’t assume other road users have seen you.” Always a number 1 in our book and THE Golden Rule of riding in traffic! (You might want to check out our link to the Trek/Bontrager’s ABCs of Awareness if you haven’t already.)
“5. Look drivers in the eye.” Aligned with number 1, and thus our number 2, this is a critical one. It may be the only way you have to know you have been “registered” in the driver’s attention. If you can’t link-up “eye to eye” then always assume you have NOT been seen! And even once you do, proceed with caution and shift your focus to their front tires for an indication of their decision making. Too many times we’ve heard the sad, tragic refrain of, “I never saw them…”
“7. Ditch your headphones.” Number 3 for us because we see this no-no all too often. It is bad enough to wear headphones out on the open road, but it is near suicidal to do so with in city traffic. Sure it is a tempting notion but if you want to avoid being the next statistic, enjoying your ride with musical accompaniment is far less important than being able to discern what is going on around and especially behind you. Leave the newscasts and rockin’ for other times and places and you’ll greatly increase your odds of staying healthy enough to keep on enjoying them elsewhere!
Find the rest of Cyclist’s tips at this link. And if you have the time, let us know how you would rank them. And tell us what would you add? (Oh, and btw, for those Americans who read the tips, an HGV is a big ol’ truck!)