The best guideline is: Be Alert. Be Wary. Be Seen.
Be Alert: Scan ahead, center, left and right.
Be Wary: Pay attention to vehicles, pedestrians and others on the road.
Be Seen: Use your horn, hand signals and light to be seen by others on the road.
11 Tips for Safer Cycling
- Wear your helmet. Follow this simple rule and you reduce your risk of serious injury by as much as 85 percent.
- Keep your head up and look ahead, not at the ground. You need to see what is coming up so you have time to react and maneuver.
- One person per bike. Riding with unsecured passengers puts you at risk for injury to yourself and others.
- Ride in single file with space between bikes.
- Ride on the right side of the road, never against traffic. Otherwise, you are at risk for an accident – or a ticket.
- Plan ahead if you will ride in a group. Agree on the route ahead of time. Have a plan on what you will do if separated by traffic.
- If you will be riding in an unfamiliar area, check out local laws and rules first.
- Avoid busy roads and peak traffic times on your route.
- Before riding at night, ask someone to help you check your visibility to motorists.
- Maintain the bikes in your household. Keep chains clean and lubricated and periodically inspect brake pads.
- Communicate your intention to turn, stop, and change lanes using recognized hand signals.
What is a Hazard?
- Both road and weather conditions can be dangerous to riders. Identifying potential hazards and paying attention to your surroundings will keep you safer.
Hazards on the road
- Uneven, rough surfaces can cause falls.
- An object in the road can cause a flat tire, loss of balance or unsafe maneuver. Avoid riding across unknown objects.
- Slippery surfaces create a loss of traction which may cause you to lose control of your bike. Slow down or walk your bike across slippery surfaces.
Make safe choices
- Do not wear headphones while riding.
- Keep both hands on the handlebars, except when signaling.
- Keep both feet on pedals.
- In a group, ride single-file, with the flow of traffic.
- Wear a brightly colored helmet and retro-reflective material on your clothing.
- Use the correct hand signals.
- Before entering a roadway: Stop. Look left. Look right. Look left.
- Avoid riding at twilight or in the dark, especially on narrow roads and roads with speed limits that exceed 50 km/h
Please also check out these resources for more safety tips