How to help drivers see you while cycling at roundabouts and beyond

Tired of having a close call when you’re riding around a roundabout? Having to jostle for position as you approach a set of traffic lights? Or maybe you don’t know how to stay safe whilst taking a bend on your bike.

If any of these situations sound familiar then you’ve come to the right place.

As well as helping you get the compensation you deserve in the event of a cycling accident, we are also dedicated to helping you avoid any accidents in the first place.

In this article, we will reveal safety measures that you can take to ensure you have a safe ride whether you encounter traffic lights, a roundabout or you encounter a severe bend.

Roundabouts

Travelling around a roundabout can be daunting at the best of times especially if it has multiple lanes.

However, there are resources out there that can help you take on roundabouts with confidence.

Rule 77 of the Highway Code says:

“You may feel safer walking your cycle round on the pavement or verge. If you decide to ride round keeping to the left-hand lane you should:

  • Be aware that drivers may not easily see you
  • Take extra care when cycling across exits. You may need to signal right to show you are not leaving the roundabout
  • Watch out for vehicles crossing your path to leave or join the roundabout.”

Whilst these tips can help you stay safe when navigating a roundabout, they may not be practical for everyone. Following these recommendations may result in your journey taking longer and may also cause potential issues when you try to rejoin the traffic flow.

If you are looking for an alternative to the advice provided by the Highway Code, the National Standard in Cycle Training has their own advice.

They suggest that, as you approach a roundabout, you should first check behind you to check that you have the space to pull into the middle of the road. You should then signal your intentions to other road users either with an outstretched arm or lights that have been fitted to your bike. This should prevent traffic from overtaking you and will make you more visible as you travel around the roundabout.

By staying more central, you can stay away from traffic entering the roundabout from the left-hand side, whilst also making you more visible to those who are already in the traffic flow.

In order to exit the roundabout safely, you should keep checking each exit as you pass it, and looking over your shoulder frequently before signalling and undertaking your turn.

Traffic lights

Many of the principles that you will follow when navigating a roundabout can be applied to negotiating your way through various sets of traffic lights.

As you approach the lights, you should be asking yourself what the best position for you to be in is so that you can see and be seen by others.

If there is stationary traffic ahead as you approach a junction you should either overtake slowly if possible and take a central position at the head of the traffic or if this isn’t possible, you should remain at the back of the queue and wait patiently.

Once the lights turn green, you should maintain a central position in your lane especially if you are crossing a junction. As with any manoeuvre when you are cycling, the key is to remain aware and alert any other road users of your intentions with plenty of warning beforehand.

Taking a tight turn

Holding a position to the left of the road when taking a left-hand bend isn’t only dangerous for you as a cyclist, it can also lead to a road traffic accident if a car tries to overtake on the bend.

By staying central, your field of view will be wider, allowing you to see more of what lies beyond the bend much sooner than if you had stayed on the left-hand side. Constantly reassess the traffic conditions, road type and your riding position, this will give you the best chance of taking even the tightest bend with confidence.

Conclusion

Cycling on the roads in the UK can be a difficult task, but these safety tips should go some way in helping you have a more confident ride next time you saddle up.

However, if you are involved in a cycling accident that you believe wasn’t your fault, you should contact our team today.

They have a wealth of experience in dealing with a wide variety of cycling related accidents and will help you achieve the maximum amount of compensation for your case.

If you would like to arrange a free case assessment with one of our specialist cycling solicitors, please call 01625 506 672 today.