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Cycling to work is one of the best ways to start the day, but only if you get there in one piece. By the time you sit at your desk endorphins will be pumping through your body. You’ll be so productive you won’t look up until it’s time for lunch.
You’ve just got to reduce your chances of something bad happening during the commute. Do you have any idea how you’ll be able to stay safe? It won’t be easy because it’s busy in the morning, but here are some tips you will find useful.
1. You Must Always Be Visible
There is a good reason why manufacturers sell red flashing lights. When someone is driving behind you they’ll see your light in their peripheral vision even if they’re not looking at you. The front lights are important too.
Cars coming from the other side will know something is there. It also helps if you wear a high vis vest, plus you can put reflective stickers on your helmet. If you’re visible it’s very unlikely someone will hit you.
2. Don’t Be Too Unpredictable
You’ve got to accept the fact cars will crush you. Don’t weave in and out of traffic like a Formula One driver because you think you’re untouchable. Cars won’t know what to expect and they will take risks.
If you ride your bike like a normal person drivers will be able to predict what you’ll do. When you want to do something a bit unpredictable use hand signals first. If you don’t it’s extremely dangerous.
3. Stay Outside The Door Zone
Drivers can have the best dash cams in the world, but it still won’t stop them from being reckless. Doors will come flying in your direction. You don’t want to be on a direct collision course when they do.
The only way you’ll stay safe is by keeping well away from parked cars, especially when you’re going fast. Don’t assume you’ll be able to react in time. Everything happens so quickly you won’t have a chance.
4. Wearing The Right Clothing
It’s possible you’ll fall off your bike one day. Even if it doesn’t involve a car you can still get seriously hurt. For example, if you’re wearing shorts your skin could be ripped apart when it hits the road.
If you wear the right clothing it’s less likely to happen. When you have thick pants on you might walk away from a fall with a few scrapes. Pack your work clothes in a bag and get changed when you arrive at the office.
5. Make Sure Your Bike Is Okay
Sometimes chains can come flying off when you’re cycling along the road. You don’t want it to happen in busy traffic. People also have a habit of cycling around even when their brakes aren’t working properly.
It’s crucial you ensure your bike is serviceable before jumping on it. Keep your tires inflated, oil your chain, and do everything else necessary to keep you safe. You wouldn’t drive in a car that was falling apart.
You Don’t Want To End Up In An Accident
You could end up seriously hurt if you’re involved in an accident. Maybe you’ll have to take a few days off work. If you follow the tips we’ve discussed it will keep you safe 99.9 percent of the time.
Ryan Yarbrough is a small business consultant, speaker, and the manager at Davis Financial Services, a small business consulting firm.