Cape Times - - METRO -

OC­TO­BER is na­tional trans­port month and not only does the Pedal Power As­so­ci­a­tion (PPA) want to see cy­clists en­joy­ing them­selves on the trails and roads, but rider safety re­mains a top pri­or­ity.

In line with its na­tion­wide Stay Wider of the Rider mis­sion to ed­u­cate all road users, PPA ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Robert Vo­gel has put to­gether some cru­cial safe-cy­cling tips to fol­low:

Be vis­i­ble: Wear bright clothes so that driv­ers can see you – any­thing neon is great dur­ing the day­time. It’s best to avoid cy­cling be­fore sun­rise and sun­set, but if you do go for a ride af­ter dark, be sure to wear re­flec­tive gear. When turn­ing, be sure to sig­nal to driv­ers and make eye con­tact when pos­si­ble. Ride in a straight, pre­dictable line so that you don’t take any driv­ers by sur­prise.

Avoid rid­ing in the early morn­ing hours: We are very con­cerned about the amount of hit-and-run ac­ci­dents that hap­pen be­tween 4am and 5am when a lot of in­tox­i­cated driv­ers re­turn home from a night out.

Check your bike: Be­fore you head out, check your tyre pres­sure and brakes. This way there’s less chance of a tech­ni­cal mal­func­tion that could jeop­ar­dise your safety.

Ride in groups if pos­si­ble: More and more cases of mug­gings and bike jack­ing are re­ported to the PPA. Try to slot in with a lo­cal What­sApp group for your own safety.

Wear an ID bracelet: Most of them have an emer­gency num­ber to call should you need med­i­cal at­ten­tion. It also makes it eas­ier to con­tact your next-of-kin.

Do not use your cell­phone: Just as when you are driv­ing your car, don’t text or call while rid­ing. Rather stop to take or make a call.

“Let’s share the road,” said Vo­gel. “Cour­tesy comes free and leaves both par­ties feel­ing bet­ter. Ac­knowl­edge each other on the road and thank cour­te­ous be­hav­iour.”

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