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This article was published on April 6th, 2022
Riding your bike to work is one of the easiest ways to get some daily exercise into your routine. As the nights get lighter and the weather gets warmer, many people swap their morning commute in the car for an early morning bike ride, and whilst cycling to work provides many benefits, it comes with its risks. Whether you’re a seasoned cyclist or you’re just getting started, here are all the important things you need to know about how to stay safe whilst cycling to work.
If you have decided to cycle to work, you must know the rules of the road and any other traffic signs, as well as the Highway Code. The Highway Code is what’s known as a ‘code of conduct, which means it’s a set of guidelines that set out the rules and regulations that you need to follow while cycling. As of January 2022, the highway code has been updated with new rules, 7 of which, affect cyclists including; cycling in shared spaces, changes to road positioning whilst cycling, cycling in groups, cycling past parked vehicles and overtaking whilst cycling.
Before you even think about setting out on your commute, make sure you have everything you need to get you there. If you own a bike that’s suitable for cycling to work, make sure that it’s in good working order and that you know how to maintain and repair it. This includes checking that the brakes are working properly, checking that the tires are sufficiently inflated and checking that both the front and rear lights are working.
There’s a reason that many cyclists wear bright, reflective clothing, as a cyclist you are classed as a vulnerable road user and wearing clothing that will keep you visible to other road users will help to keep you safe.
It is likely that if you’re cycling to work you’ll need to carry your everyday items with you. It is a good idea to invest in a cycling backpack that is comfortable and has enough storage capacity for your needs, whether it’s for your lunch or a laptop. If you’re bringing any technology to work, such as a laptop or tablet, you’ll want a rucksack with additional padding.
You must plan your route before attempting to cycle to work. During commuting hours, the roads tend to be busier than usual and people are rushing. By planning your route you can avoid roads that you know are going to be busy and stick to cycle paths where possible. You’ll want to find a route with good surfaces avoiding stops-and-starts like traffic lights. Ensure you know the route beforehand and complete a practice run before cycling in busy traffic. You may also want to vary your route, particularly if you are intending to cycle to work all year round. There are plenty of ways to make planning your route to work easier including ‘Cycling UK Journey Planner’ and ‘Cycle Streets’. All you need to do is enter your start and end destinations and the system will provide you with a range of routes.
We all know that British weather can be unpredictable, even in the summer months and whilst you might plan on cycling to work every day, it is important to check the weather forecast beforehand so that you can appropriately prepare for your commute. If the weather looks particularly bad, avoid cycling on that day.
Above are just a few ways to stay safe whilst cycling to work. However, even if you take every precaution, unfortunately, accidents will still happen. If you have been involved in a cycling accident that wasn’t your fault, we can help.
As no-win-no-fee cycling accident claims specialists, we can ensure you receive the support you may need following your cycling accident as well as the compensation you deserve, including remuneration for lost earnings, damage to your bicycle and your cycling equipment as well as any medical costs you may incur as a result of your injuries.
To speak to one of our specialist team call us now on 0800 1979 345, or complete our simple enquiry form and we can call you back at a time to suit you.