Rules Of The Road
Cycling on the road is not as common as in some of the other countries in Europe. Despite this it is becoming more popular, especially as an increasing amount of people try to reduce their carbon footprint. There are also a number of initiatives in cities that encourage riding bicycles to and from work.
As this trend continues it is essential that every rider follows the rules of the road. It is the responsibility of every bike owner to know and respect the numerous regulations that have been put in place. There is some room for improvement when it comes to rider safety. Despite this, there are already various requirements that must be followed. These may change over time so readers should stay up to date by referring to government websites on the subject.
Between the sunset and sunrise hours every bicycle should have two lights: one white, one red. The white light needs to be fitted onto the front of the vehicle. Meanwhile the red one should be on the rear pointing back. The rear also needs to be fitted with a red reflector. Four amber reflectors are required to be fitted onto the pedals.
It might sound obvious but both the front and back brakes need to be functioning. This is very important as bicycles may sometimes have to make sudden stops when in traffic. There are no laws in place requiring bells on bikes. Despite this, they are still useful tools to warn others of your presence.
How The Rider Should Behave
In the UK traffic flows on the left side of the road. Riders should never go against this flow or they will risk an accident. Bicycles are always driven on the left side of the lane, giving other vehicles a good amount of space. Cycle lanes are common in Britain but are not compulsory to use. Despite this, they tend to make journeys much safer.
Cyclists will usually encounter motor vehicles, other cyclists and passing pedestrians. Being respectful of everyone is very important. Each person is trying to get somewhere and keeping traffic flowing in a safe way will make life easier for all road users. Special care should be taken for older people and children. It is a good idea to give them plenty of room when they cross the road.
Toucan crossings allow cyclists to ride alongside pedestrians. These are push operated and users have to wait until lights tell them to cross. However, on all over types of crossings cyclists are required to dismount and push their bikes. It may be tempting to walk across when the light is still red when no traffic is visible. This should never be done as it can end in a collision.