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Road Safety

Jun 18, 2005
Road Safety Guidance on riding safely with ERC

Safe group riding

ERC is concerned for members' safety and that of other road users and expects members to ride responsibly. Every rider is responsible for their own safety whilst out on any club run, and is expected to contribute to keep the ride safe for all. From time to time crashes occur and often these are on chain-gangs. The committee also receive complaints from motorists & pedestrians about dangerous riding and we would like to remove grounds for such complaints.

Riders must:

  1. Obey the Highway Code; See DfT guidance for cyclists
    • Keep 2-abreast unless on narrow or busy roads where you should be aware of queues of traffic building up behind when singling out may be appropriate to show consideration to and prevent frustration of drivers . Singling out should be implemented by loud and clear instructions to the group as per the paragraph below.
    • Be considerate to other road users.
    • Stop at red lights and pedestrian crossings
  2. When group riding
    • Call the behaviour of errant riders
    • Be prepared to heed warnings from others
    • Understand how to ride safely in a chain-gang.
      -  see the ERC page on chain-ganging
    • Give warning of obstacles and approaching vehicles (but do not take risks with riding one-handed);
    • Keep to the correct side of the road;
    • Avoid sudden braking or sideways movements except in emergency;
    • Be aware of the cyclists directly in front of you, in case they slow or stop;
    • Be aware that if you stand up in the saddle abruptly your bike will suddenly move backwards;
    • When singling out, communicate clearly with the riders around you (the recommended technique is for the inside cyclist to go ahead. The outside cyclist is then able to see immediately when it is safe to move in.
    • Move to the back of the bunch if you need to remove clothing or do something else that might disrupt the bunch or involve risk.
    • Do not use music players, check your phone or do anything that takes your attention or awareness away from other riders in the group and other road users.
      (from VC Norwich)
  3. Be equipped for the conditions
    • All riders are strongly advised to wear a helmet

Background

ERC wants to instil a safety-culture both in our member and in those we ride alongside.  We remind cyclists that they have rights and responsibilities as legitimate road users.

There were 115 fatalities and 2,450 serious injuries suffered by cyclists in 2008 with an unknown number falling onto the tarmac.  A cyclist is a vulnerable road user and will invariably come off worse as a result of an incident with a car.

Crashes do not happen by accident.  They are often the result of several conditions coming together at one time.  Inattention, poor maintenance, fatigue, road conditions as well as inappropriate behaviours can all be contributory factors.

When riding in a group (often at the limit of your capabilities) you bear an onus of responsibility both to fellow group riders and to other road users.  The chain-gang is often where safety concerns are at their greatest.

ERC wishes you safe and happy riding

References

The Highway Code has specific sections for cyclists

From BC; Wise Words - Cycling and Safety

  • Wise Words - Cycling and Safety

Think! Road Safety Cycling

Tips from Down Under (We're sorry, we can't provide their weather)

SCC also has a 32 page manual of etiquette

More Information

Check the What's on? diary page for details of club activities.

Please read the Frequently asked questions page for answers to common queries, or contact us for more information.

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