I witnessed a cycling accident yesterday and it prompted this post. It happened during my morning commute on a quiet section of a bikeway. No automobiles, no pedestrians, just two cyclists in a hurry. It was raining, cold and windy but the visibility was good and there was no traffic. No traffic. One cyclist was travelling quickly and on the back wheel of the rider ahead. The lead rider decided to turn right and quickly slowed to make a sharp turn The rider behind could not stop quickly enough, crashed into the bike ahead, both lost control of their bikes and fell to the ground. Neither rider was seriously hurt but the incident could have easily been avoided.
Too few cyclists signal when they are turning, stopping or slowing downing.
Unlike an automobile, a bike is not equipped with stop lights that automatically signal the car is slowing or stopping. And, they do have lighted turn signals that clearly indicate the driver’s intent to turn. It cannot tell others what it is doing. That is your job. The dangers are the same. Cars and other cyclists follow too closely, change lanes and make turns unexpectedly. Pedestrians cross streets (and bike paths). Traffic on the street needs to know what your intention is so they can act accordingly – change lanes or not, cross the street or not or proceed through an intersection or not.
Use the signals illustrated above and make the road a safer place for both yourself and everyone around you!
Reblogged this on echo in the city and commented:
A good post, with good advice. I think I do pretty well when riding my bike around, but this is definitely something I could improve upon!
I think we all can. I try but too often forget. And, despite knowing better, I do not always obey the rules, particularly at stop streets. Once I am clipped in, I do not like to step out of the pedals.
Agreed completely there pal… Guilty here as well
I am great at right and left turns. But I have to admit I do NOT do well with slowing. Buy I do watch carefully if someone is on my tire, and step up the communication. Good reminder!
Hear you! I am making more of an effort though, particularly after what I witnessed yesterday. You never know what or who is behind you.
Agreed, last month I rang bell and said LEFT just to the cyclist in front of my turn left without signaling into me. She went down I didn’t….
The bottom line… Make sure everyone knows what you are INTENDING to do. If they are guessing… well… you may be in trouble. Good post.