Whether it's in an effort to get fit, people doing their bit for the environment or that they have been inspired to take to their bikes following the UK's recent sporting success in cycling, there is no doubt that there are more cyclists on the road.
Moreover, as we approach the end of Daylight Saving Time (the clocks change on Oct 29th by the way) and visibility goes down, it's important that we stay alert to all types of traffic on the road to keep ourselves and everyone else on the road safe.
Therefore, here's a few tips for when you encounter cyclists on the road:
Don't honk your horn when approaching a cyclist from the rear. We've seen and heard that many drivers do this because they think it helps warn the cyclist about an approaching car. However, in many cases, it can startle the cyclist and possibly cause them to swerve..... into your path, towards parked cars on the side of the road or off the road itself. Cyclists can hear most cars approaching so a better way is to slow down as you approach them and give them a wide berth as you pass.
Don't stop in the cyclist box at traffic lights. The box is there to make cycling more safe and to allow cyclists to get away safely from junctions so please don't stop in the box. Moreover, if you do get caught stopping in a box you could get an expensive ticket.
When turning always be on the look out for cyclists from all sides. Not all cyclists are as observant of the rules of the road or as visible as we might like them to be. Therefore, when turning left or right always be on the lookout for cyclists in front of you but also approaching from your rear, on both your left and right hand sides.
Finally, when you've parked your car have a good look around you before you open your car door. Many accidents happen just after drivers have parked their car on the side of the road and they then think they are now safe to jump out of the car. However, opening car doors into the road is the cause of countless incidents between cars and cyclists. So, when parking on the side of the road please be careful and vigilant for a little longer.