Being on a bicycle is a wonderfully free feeling and your two-wheeled chariot can take you on many thrilling adventures.It’s crucial to take care, however, especially if you are driving in traffic, or in low light conditions.If you are a beginner, start with these basic safety guidelines.
1. Feed and water your trusty steed. A bike that is in great working order is a must so that nothing will fail or fall off when you’re heading down that killer hill. Like any vehicle, a bicycle needs to be serviced properly before you embark on any major challenge, or when parts start to get worn.
2. Rules are rules. Be an expert on the road rules affecting cyclists, and obey them to the letter. Taking chances by nipping through gaps or holding onto vehicles on the up-hill’s is – obviously – dangerous. Start by familiarising yourself with these Cycling Rules of the Road and Road Safety from Arrive Alive.
3. Dress to be seen. When you’re on your bike is not the time to blend into the landscape. Go lumo, with reflective panels and lights. In reduced visibility you will greatly increase your chance of being seen if you have lights on the front (white) and back (red). Even in daylight, lights have been shown to reduce visibility-related accidents by as much as 30%, says Arrive Alive.
4. Find some cycle buddies. Cycling in a group makes you more visible, and it’s also a good way to prepare for being in a pack when you’re racing. Be careful to stay in single file so you don’t expose yourself to cars that drive too close.
5. Keep friends and family informed of your plans. If you’re off on a long ride, leave a map or notes of your planned route so people know where to look for you in an emergency. Download the Santam app (you don’t have to be a policyholder) to use the Be Safe feature so your family can track you as you go.
Set yourself a challenge by considering participation in a cycle race. Search and view exciting new challenges on our Featured Events page, where you can conveniently register and enter events online.