Drive to Survive… While Riding Your Bike

Yes, that’s a reference to the hit Netflix series on Formula 1. As fellow cyclists, we
understand the nuances of navigating saddle safety. We’ve tackled bike safety
and security
countless times and continue to advocate for every rider’s peace of mind. It goes without saying, however, that we’re not alone when it comes to life in the fast lane. In fact, we’re far from it.

In this blog post, we’ll discuss 5 driving behaviors that cyclists can’t stand and tell you
how driving a car (while riding your bike) can help you ride more defensively.



5 Most Common Driving Behaviors That Are Problematic to Cyclists

1. Dooring

What it is: This is when a driver in a parked car suddenly opens their door without checking if anyone’s behind them.

How to avoid it: Keep your distance from parked cars especially when any drivers or passengers are inside. Use your rear-view mirror instead of looking over your shoulder. That way, you won’t potentially miss seeing what’s in front of you.

2. Tailgating

What it is: It’s definitely terrifying for cyclists when a motorist drives an inch behind their rear wheel. It baffles me how often drivers think it’s ok. Even worse, some even attempt to shove you aside.

How to avoid
Always be aware of the cars and the flow of traffic behind you. Use your rear-view
mirrors to keep an eye out for vehicles that may potentially be inching too close for comfort.


3. The Overtake and Cut-Off

What it is: Another situation that often requires you to slam on the brakes. You’re minding your own business when suddenly a driver cuts you off by:

·       Passing you in order to turn right in front of you

·       Turning left in front of you as you travel straight through

·       Running through a stop sign or pulling far too close to the intersection

How to avoid
Stay alert and assertive when you have right of way but be prepared to stop or turn especially if you can’t make eye contact or signal to the driver. If you can’t stop
safely, be ready to quickly turn to get out of harm’s way. It helps to practice making an abrupt decisive right turn when you’re not fighting traffic so you’ll have the confidence to do it when needed.


4. Sideswiping

What it is: This can be very dangerous and usually happens when a driver of a huge vehicle can’t see you. Another common scenario is when a driver overtakes you and then cuts you off. 

How to avoid it: Instead of hugging the curb, take the whole lane to make yourself as visible as possible or ride as far to the left as practical. This may signal drivers to stay behind you rather than overtake you before they turn right. In case you find yourself
getting shoved, do not proceed to move forward. Just stop until you’re behind
the vehicle.


5. Hogging or stopping in the bike lane

What it is: It sounds crazy but some drivers use cycling lanes as a sort of emergency parking spot – while others simply just take up too much space from your designated lane during traffic.

How to avoid it: As you would with these previous situations, keep a watch out for cars parked in front of you. Be prepared to make the necessary quick turns in order to avoid getting shoved into the curb or slammed into the car in front of you. Most of these close-call behaviours are caused by reckless choices and negligence from other motorists. We hope this list helps you paint a better picture of what a reckless driver’s perspective is. Try taking a drive around your frequent biking routes for a better feel for these mistakes.


Ride confidently by keeping a Crash Card in your back pocket

For added peace of mind, consider carrying The Biking Lawyer Crash Card. It’s a handy card for   cyclists to keep on them at all times. With helpful post-collision tips and a QR code to their Online Crash Report, the Crash Card ensures you (or your witnesses) are able to gather critical crash scene data that will be helpful in getting the care and recovery you deserve.

At Bicycle Broker, we are at the forefront of providing the most advanced and
cost-efficient bike insurance. If you haven’t secured a policy yet, speak to Bicycle
today to find out what the right fit is for you! We have flexible packages to choose from that can be customized to fit your needs.

Happy riding! 

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