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Sharing the road

Cyclists and drivers need to work together to share London’s roads safely.

By following these hints and tips you can reduce the risk of a collision and help ensure that everyone travels safely and easily.

Before you travel

All Road Users

• Make sure you’re properly prepared for your journey

• If you need glasses (or contact lenses) to meet the Highway Code’s minimum vision standards, you must wear them at all times

• Don’t allow yourself to be distracted by your mobile phone or by wearing earphones to listen to music

• Never drive or cycle under the influence of alcohol or drugs

• Regularly refresh your knowledge of the Highway Code to make sure you’re not putting yourself or others in danger

Drivers of Large Goods Vehicles

• If possible, plan your journey to avoid routes that are popular with cyclists

• If you can’t avoid cyclist commuter routes, try to travel at quieter times

All Drivers

• Be particularly vigilant near schools

Cyclists

• Consider using designated cycle lanes and other dedicated routes, such as Barclays Cycle Superhighways, when possible

• Consider planning a route along quieter roads where you are less likely to encounter lorries

• You can order free cycle guides showing direct routes, quieter roads and ‘Greenways’ through parks and along canals from tfl.gov.uk/cycleguides

Before you drive

All Drivers make sure that

• Mirrors are correctly adjusted, clean and set to minimise blind spots

• Indicators are working, clean and can be seen

Drivers of Large Goods Vehicles

Complete a walk-round check of your vehicle before each journey to make sure that:

• Signs for cyclists are clean and easily visible

• Any technology is fitted correctly, working and clean, including Fresnel lenses, side proximity sensors, blind spot cameras and sideguards

Cyclists

Ensure your bike is fitted with a front white light and a back red light. You may be fined £50 if you don’t have them.

Check your bike is roadworthy and consider wearing a helmet. You should make sure that the:

• Brakes are working properly

• Tyres are inflated correctly

• Saddle is at the right height for you

• Bell is in good working order, if you have one

Make sure your training is up to date

On the road – Drivers

All Drivers

• Keep checking for cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists who may weave through stationary traffic

• Look out for cyclists, especially when checking your mirrors before indicating, varying your speed or changing direction

• Check over your shoulder for cyclists and other road users before opening your door to ensure it doesn’t swing into their path.

Drivers of Large Goods Vehicles

• Keep scanning your mirrors when approaching junctions in case a cyclist enters your blind spot

• Before pulling away from junctions, look over the dashboard (even if you have a Class VI mirror fitted) and try to make eye contact with any cyclists around your vehicle so they know you’ve seen them

• Check your nearside blind spot every time you turn left

On the road – Cyclists
  • Watch out for traffic turning ahead of you at junctions and never pass left-turning vehicles on the nearside

    • Be particularly careful around all large vehicles

    – they have blind spots directly in front of them

    as well as on each side and behind the vehicle

    – it is safest to keep your distance

    • Ensure your bike is fitted with a front white light and a back red light

On the road – Signals

All Drivers

• Use your indicators when turning or changing lanes, even if you don’t think anyone is near you

• Indicate in good time to allow others to react

• If it doesn’t do so automatically, turn the indicator off once you have completed your manoeuvre to avoid giving misleading information to others

Cyclists

• Watch out for other vehicles and pedestrians, and use appropriate hand signals before turning to show your intentions

• When waiting for traffic lights to change, try to make eye contact with the driver of the vehicle behind you to make sure they know you’re there

Sharing the road

Cyclists

• Only overtake if there is enough room and it is safe to do so

• Only cycle on the pavement if it is signed as a shared use path

• Don’t cycle the wrong way along one-way streets unless it’s clearly marked as a two-way route for cyclists

• Don’t ride through red traffic lights – it’s dangerous and you could be fined £50

• Ride in a straight line past parked cars, rather than dodging between them, and allow at least a full door’s width between you in case a car door opens suddenly

• Ride central on narrow roads. If the road is too narrow for vehicles to pass you safely, it may be safer to ride towards the middle of the lane to prevent dangerous overtaking by other vehicles

All Drivers

• Look out for cyclists at junctions

• Give cyclists plenty of space so that they can manoeuvre to avoid potholes, drain covers or car doors

• When overtaking, give cyclists and motorcyclists at least as much space as you would a car

• Do not enter the Advanced Stop Line box when the light is red – this space is reserved for the safety of cyclists and you may be liable for a £100 fixed penalty and three points on your licence


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