You bought the bike because it was a long time dream of yours. You longed the wind in your face and the speed. However, you can get stuck on traffic on your way to work and it could be a bummer. It’s as much a speed (or lack there of) issue but a safety one. You have to be extra careful. Here are some things to take into account:
Observe your surroundings
· Keep your eyes open and look at what the drivers are doing. Usually they’ll move their heads towards the side that they’re planning on turning, even if they use mirrors, it’s a reflex.
· If you have a car that’s opposite in front of you, look at the wheels and where they’re turning, they may forget to signal. Making yourself visible to the driver will help. You can do this having your beams on even during the day and wearing bright colors in your gear.
· While you’re on the road, always, practice being aware of everything around you, not just in front or behind you. Look at other drivers, signals, speeds.
· Look at where you’re going. This might seem fairly obvious, but looking way ahead and trying to identify asphalt with different substances can guarantee that you avoid a severe crash. Usually you’ll see a spill because it will appear shiny and you can ride beside it and not slip.
· Even with the use of mirrors, you will have to learn to turn your head you’re your shoulder pretty quickly to make sure your blind-spot is covered.
Be ready for the unexpected
· Traffic may be steady but it can also come to a quick stop. In order to avoid being in a two-car sandwich make sure to stay a little to the righ or the left of the car that’s in front of you. This will not only avoid the car behind you to hit you if they didn’t react quickly enough, it will save you if your own instincts are not speedy enough.
· Drivers usually make the decision to make the exit right before they pass it, so if you’re passing them on the right thinking that they’re staying on the lane, you can get seriously injured.
· In order to react very quickly, you need to keep your foot and your hand close to the brakes.
Use the space wisely
· One of the best benefits of riding a bike is that you can fit in most spaces in traffic. Your bike has plenty of maneuverability so take advantage of it while traffic is standing still and make your way ahead.
· The same benefit will help you when trying to avoid a crash. Bikes do fall, but they also help you not to if you practice enough to ride them well.
· Don’t run the traffic light right when it changes and if possible, use other vehicles as shields. You never know if the driver on the crossing road decided to run a red light, it will be better for them to hit another car than your body!