Monday, January 13, 2014

Be Safer On The Road With These 3 Tips

Beat The Traffic - Get There and Back Safely

If you have been riding for enough time to complain about motorists, you probably have had some near-miss situation happen to you. Today's motorists are notorious for being consistently distracted – and in many parts of the country — downright dangerous.

 To simply know that this is true does not help when you're actually out on the road, though. You should be actively mindful of motorists around you — be one move ahead of the traffic. This will ensure that you get where you're going and that you have a better time on the way.


Of course, it should suffice to say that defensive riding is the number one way to prevent accidents when out there in the cold street. One reason for that comes from this road proverb: You can drive a truck between what motorists ought to do - what they're legally obliged to do - versus what they actually do. Just because I have the right of way does not mean I can proceed in the comfort that my rights, life and limb will not be violated.

So let's examine a few of the most common places to be aware of danger so that you may avoid nasty collisions or falls.

Cars Turning Right

When passing a motorist (or when one passes you) take a quick second to look through the window of the car. You will be amazed at how much you can divine of a motorist's knowledge and intentions.

Did he see you? Is he looking in his rear or side view mirror? Is he slowing down to make the right turn? Is he concentrated on the flow of incoming traffic— without looking back at you?

Remember - no matter how much it doesn't seem like it - motorists don't want to hit you either. Give them the benefit of the doubt and slow down a bit when you are in a place that you can tell it could be dangerous if motorists are distracted.


Cars Turning Left


Typically, seeing a car that is turning left is not too difficult to do. However, if you are riding in dense traffic, sometimes the traffic going in your same direction can hide a left-turning motorist from your view. If you have to ride in traffic like that, look for an opening in the traffic in front of you. The likeliest reason for this space is to allow a vehicle to cross the road, right in front of you.



Attentive Posture

Many of us who have ridden for a long time know fellow riders who tend to crash more than others. Typically, these are the inattentive riders. This might be excused, but for the consequences. At some point inattentiveness, and the disinclination to practice defensive riding, shifts the blame onto the cyclist. When you decide to engage in the sport of cycling, you're the one who'll pay the steepest price in an accident, regardless of whom is at fault.

The safest posture is to assume the worst from those on the other side. Then, you'll be pleasantly surprised when these drivers do the right thing and, more to the point, you're more likely to arrive home safe and sound and able to ride another day.

Come to any of the awesome Scheller's Fitness and Cycling locations to learn more about bicycle safety, to pick up a new helmet, lights, or other safety accessories. We'd love to help you pick out just what you need to make you safer and more comfortable on your rides.

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