Riding on the Road Guide

I've been riding on the road for many years, and there are a few simple rules I've gathered along the way.

Stay Off the Pavements - You're not meant to be on there (unless it's a cycle path), so for yours and others safety, get used to riding on the road. It's not that scary, and 99.999% of drivers are happy to share the road with you.

Red Means Stop - Red lights are there for a reason. Stop when you see one. NO exceptions. EVER!!

Be Seen - Get some lights and a few nice bright jerseys. If drivers can't see you, you're gonna get hit.

Look after #1 (i.e. you) - Don't worry about holding up car drivers. Be courteous and considerate where appropriate, but you have as much right to be on the road as them. If you need to be in primary, get into primary.

Primary Position - This means riding in the middle of the lane. You should be in primary at EVERY single junction/roundabout. If you're going to be in primary, try not to dawdle. Car drivers are a lot more accepting of primary if they can see you're making an effort.

Don't Hug the Kerb - It just encourages stupid/dangerous overtakes. You should ride AT LEAST 1 metre from the kerb at all times.

Beware Car Doors - If you're coming past ANY cars, you need at least 1 metre space. Getting doored is no fun.

Be Zen - You're going to get some abuse at some point. Just ignore it and go to your happy place. There's no point arguing with idiots.

Metal is Hard - Don't play chicken with cars. Even if you're in the right, that's no consolation if you're lying in a pool of your own blood.

Count to Ten - Never shout/gesture at any car driver in anger. There's just no point.

Silence is Bliss - Pedestrians will step off the kerb without looking because they don't hear a car. Your bike is probably silent, so assume that every pedestrian needs to brush up on their green cross code (i.e. stop, LOOK, listen).

Riding on the road is an absolute pleasure, and the amount of stroppy car drivers I've encountered is probably 0.0000001% of all the cars I come across. The only time I use a cycle path is when it's not safe to be on the road (i.e. dual carriage ways etc).

In all my years of riding on the road, these basic rules have kept me safe. Use them wisely.

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