Cycling along a dedicated bike path is always preferable to pedaling alongside motor vehicles.
Unfortunately, riders must sometimes contend with traffic, and cars will forever present a danger.
The following are some strategies for sharing the road with motorists and avoiding catastrophe.
Practice Cycling in Tight Spots
The better acclimated you become to biking under stressful conditions, the more prepared you’ll be for
being on the road. Train yourself by moving between cars at a local parking lot. Doing this will increase
your comfort level with having vehicles alongside you. Next, create an obstacle course at home. Get used
to the stress of completing it without knocking anything over.
Practice Looking Forward
Cycling accidents typically happen when the rider is not looking ahead. As you cycle, try worrying less
about what’s behind you than what’s coming next. Be particularly vigilant at intersections, where cross-
traffic can cause tragedies. Maintain high awareness around driveways, as someone might be backing
out. Pay attention to parked cars. Operators may put an unexpected hazard in your path by throwing
open their doors without notice.
Practice Eye Contact
Never assume that someone behind the wheel sees you. Get into the habit of looking into the eyes of
drivers to confirm that your presence is recognized. Nonverbal communication can be an effective way of
determining who has the right of way.
Practice Wearing Safe Clothing
Never go biking alongside traffic without adhering to the proper dress code. Wearing brightly colored
clothing helps assure that drivers see you. The best option is to buy cycling gear from an official supplier.
Alternatively, cover your jacket and helmet with reflective tape. Affix a blinking light to your seat for added
safety. Avoid wearing clothes with dangling elements that could get caught in your wheels.
Practice Going With the Flow
The last one of the strategies for sharing the road is to plan your routes ahead of time so that you are
always riding with the flow of traffic. Most often, this means staying in the right-hand lane. Remain to the
side but not too far over that cars are tempted to zip past you. Be aware of gutters and other barriers that
could mean trouble. If you are lucky enough to be on a road that has a bike lane, take advantage of this feature.
Even if you are especially ready to handle the rigors of biking on major roads, and know the strategies for
sharing the road, there still exists the chance you’ll be in an accident. After calling 911, contact a bicycle
accident lawyer like our friends at Cohen & Cohen to file litigation against the responsible individual.