On 23 March 2020, a series of measures were announced to delay the spread of the coronavirus – in order to reduce pressure on the NHS and save lives. An average of 70 people per day were seriously injured (25,511) on the roads in 2018 – the vast majority of whom would have required hospital treatment.
Measures have reduced the number of vehicles on the roads but there is evidence of an increase in the number of people cycling to fulfil their daily exercise quota. However, we would encourage all cyclists to remember some road safety tips while out and about, such as:-
- See, be seen and BE SAFE – wear high visibility clothing and ensure you have good quality lighting when riding at night. Wear your cycle helmet.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times, keep to the left at all times except when passing others or turning to the right across the carriageway. Look and listen for others.
- Make others aware of your intentions by signalling clearly and boldly and positioning yourself on the road prior to any change in direction.
- Ride defensively, it is safer to assume motorists have not seen you or are oblivious to you. Vehicles entering and leaving the main carriageway either via side roads or private drives often do not see cyclists. Always ensure you have enough road space to take evasive action if required. Cyclists have every right to use the roads.
- Left-turning vehicles, particularly large vehicles, are a special hazard. Be prepared for vehicles to cut across your path, even mounting pavements and kerbs. If in doubt slow down or stop until they have completed the manoeuvre.
- When passing rows of parked vehicles it is safer to pull out and stay out rather than repeatedly pulling back to the nearside kerb every time there is a small gap.
- When using cycle paths be prepared for parked vehicles blocking the path and vehicles crossing the path when entering and leaving side roads.
We all need to follow government guidelines but fewer people on the roads doesn’t mean we should be any less careful.