Tips for safe cycling this summer
This summer is shaping up to be a long, hot one and the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) is urging Kiwis to get on their bikes, enjoy the great weather and discover the many benefits of cycling.
To encourage more Kiwis to give cycling a go to raise awareness of safe cycling, the NZTA’s 11th annual Bike Wise programme includes a schedule of cycling activities that will take place around country starting this month and culminating in Bike Wise Month, February 2013.
While people get out and start enjoying the best season for cycling, it’s important cyclists and motorists ensure they share the roads safely this summer.
‘‘ Cycling is a great summer activity but keeping safe on the roads should be a key consideration,’’ says NZTA manager network user behaviour, Jennie Gianotti.
‘‘Thousands of Kiwis already enjoy cycling and as the weather warms up, we’d love to see more people get out there. This year’s Bike Wise programme features plenty of fun events around the country we encourage people to head along to.’’
As holidaymakers hit the roads, here are some key tips to sharing the road safely:
Be predictable: make eye contact with other road users to ensure they are aware of you and signal your intentions clearly.
Be confident: ride in a straight line, at least a metre from parked cars and take the middle of the lane when you have to.
Be patient: slow down near parked or lined-up vehicles. Pass slowly and only when safe.
Be considerate: try not to hold up the flow of traffic. If necessary, pull over to allow vehicles to pass.
Be aware: watch for cyclists, especially in low light or rain, before opening car doors and at intersections. They may be travelling faster than you expect.
Be patient: slow down near cyclists and if need be, wait behind them. Pass slowly and only when it is safe. Ideally, leave a space of about 1.5 metres.
Be considerate: cyclists sometimes need to use the traffic lane for their safety. Give them time and space to move in and out of the lane.