It has been proven that one of the most dangerous places for cyclists to be is at traffic lights and junctions. More than half of serious crashes involving cyclists occur at these locations. This is a sobering fact for anyone who rides a bike, whether occasionally or regularly.
It is important to know how best to negotiate these areas so you can stay safe. It might be tempting to stay close to the kerb but this can actually be very dangerous to do. It means drivers cannot easily see you and the temptation is to drive past you or even sit next to you. If a driver is going to turn left they could turn in front of you or even clip you as you both turn left at the same time.
The best thing to do is to check around you for traffic and then to ride into the middle of your lane prior to arriving at the junction or traffic lights. This means whoever is behind you has to stay behind you – and they will also see you quite clearly as opposed to not noticing you at the side of the road because their eyes are on the road ahead.
Why are traffic lights and junctions potentially dangerous for cyclists?
As a cyclist you need to do everything you can to be as visible as you can possibly be. Many car drivers and drivers of other vehicles won’t be looking out for cyclists. By riding in a strong position you will be put in far less danger than if you were riding by the side of the road. Getting knocked off your bike can cause serious injuries regardless of who might be at fault for causing them. Riding defensively is therefore a very good idea.
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If you have been in a cycling accident and it occurred within the last three years you could have a potential to claim compensation if it can be determined that someone else was at fault for that accident. Let our experts decide whether we could support you through starting a no win, no fee* claim and make sure you are in the best position to take proper advice. Our 24/7 enquiry line is now open and it’s completely free to call so get in touch whenever you have the chance.
Date Published: September 12, 2014
Author: David Brown