The riding season is in full swing, and that means more folks are out on their bikes… Some who haven’t been out since last year, and some who are brand new to group riding. With that in mind we need to take a few minutes to go over some important safety details:
Remember, SAFTEY FIRST. Group riding is different than riding solo. When you are riding in a group, you are part of a team. Every member of the team has a part to play.
- This means earbuds cannot be worn. They interfere with communication within the group as well as your ability to hear the traffic all around. Besides, group riding is a social activity; chat with your fellow riders – you never know what you will learn about them.
- When you are part of a group ride, don’t ‘sightsee’. If those at the front of the group are indicating a turn to the left and you are pointing out the beautiful house on the right, we now have a dangerous situation.
- As part of the group ride, those at the head of the group MUST identify hazards to those behind – use your hands to point, and your voice to call them out.
- Just like in your car, intersections require more care and attention.
- When turning left, a group of cyclists takes as much time as an 18-wheeler to start up and get through the intersection. If you are at the head of the group, you need to ensure there is enough time for the whole group to turn and get through. Those behind you are following your lead.
- When we come to a red light, it means we have to stop. If there is no bike lane, then we need to stop behind any cars already stopped – we DO NOT ride up beside cars already stopped. When we stop, we need to stay in our lane. Please do not stop in adjoining lanes. This impedes traffic wanting to turn right or left.
- If you need to stop at the side of the road, remember to move OUT of the active lane of traffic.
- When you are leading the group and you are rolling from a standing start, don’t hammer at the front. When you are at cruising speed, those at the back will just be getting going, guaranteeing to break the group.
- It is the responsibility of the person at the front to try and keep the group together and safe. However, it’s also up to those in the pack to shout out if they are dropping off the pace or get caught at lights etc.
Let’s make this a safe summer of group rides!
If you have any questions or comments, suggestions, etc, please comment below.