Get in gear for Cycle to Work Day

Road users in Somerset are being encouraged to stay safe on Cycle to Work Day with a little help from the County Council’s Road Safety Team.

UK’s biggest cycle commuting event takes place on 15 August, aiming to promote the benefits of cycling to work instead of commuting by car.

Cycling is a great way to get fit and help the environment by reducing your carbon footprint. It’s also been proven to reduce stress, help reduce congestion and is a cheaper mode of transport than driving.

The County Council’s Road Safety Team has put together a few helpful hints and tips to ensure everyone using the road on Cycle to Work day, and every other day, has a safe journey.

Councillor John Woodman, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Road Safety, said: “Somerset is a great place to cycle around and Cycle to Work Day is a great opportunity to get on your bike and help improve both your health and the environment. If you’re planning on cycling to work for the first time or if it’s something you do on a regular basis I would still advise you to take a look at the helpful tips from the road safety team. Everyone using the road has a responsibility to look out for other road users, particularly those more vulnerable than themselves, so please take care and remember to share the road.”

Tips for those planning on cycling to work:

  • Check the bike is fit for the road by doing a quick ABC check
    • A is for air: check the tyres are in good condition
    • B is for brakes/bolts: check the brakes work and all the bolts are tight
    • C is for chain/controls: check the chain and gears are all working properly
  • Follow the Highway Code (those who haven’t cycled for a while may find it useful to brush up on the rules).
  • Ride positively, decisively, and signal intentions to other road users.
  • Be aware of your environment and avoid using headphones or mobile phones while cycling.
  • Avoid riding up the inside of large vehicles and never pull up alongside a lorry or bus at a junction.
  • Do use a helmet. It’s not mandatory but in the event of a collision it can help to reduce the seriousness of the injury.
  • It’s worth checking beforehand to make sure there is somewhere safe to store/lock your bike at your place of work.

Tips for drivers to help keep other road users safe include:

  • Look out for cyclists, especially when turning – make eye contact if possible so they know you’ve seen them.
  • Use indicators – signal intentions so that cyclists have time to react.
  • Give cyclists plenty of space when over taking, leaving as much room as you would give a car. If there isn’t sufficient space to pass, hold back.
  • Always check for cyclists when opening a car door.
  • Follow the Highway Code (it’s always a good idea to brush up on the rules on a regular basis).

For more information on road safety visit: www.somersetroadsafety.org

For more information on Cycle To Work Day visit: www.cycletoworkday.org