The following are tips seven and eight for you and your team on how not to get hit during the Williams Lake Commuter Challenge next week, June 6-10.
Collision 7, the right hook (part 2):
You’re passing a slow-moving car (or even another bike) on the right, when it unexpectedly makes a right turn right into you, trying to get to a parking lot, driveway or side street.
How to avoid this collision:
1. Don’t pass on the right. This collision is very easy to avoid. Just don’t pass any vehicle on the right. If a car ahead of you is going only 10 miles per hour, then you slow down, too, behind it. It will eventually start moving faster. If it doesn’t, pass on the left when it’s safe to do so.
2. Look behind you before turning right. Here’s your opportunity to avoid hitting cyclists who violate tip number 1 (earlier article) and try to pass you on the right. Look behind you before making a right-hand turn to make sure a bike isn’t trying to pass you.
Even if it’s the other cyclist’s fault for trying to pass you on the right when you make a right turn and have him or her slam into you, it won’t hurt any less when you are hit.
Collision 8, the left cross:
A car coming towards you makes a left turn right in front of you, or right into you. This is similar to number 1 in the first article (check www.bicyclesafe.com).
How to avoid this collision:
1. Don’t ride on the sidewalk. When you come off the sidewalk to cross the street, you’re invisible to turning motorists.
2. Get a headlight. If you’re riding at night, you should absolutely use a front headlight. It’s required by law, anyway.
3. Wear something bright, even during the day. It may seem silly, but bikes are small and easy to see through even during the day. Yellow or orange reflective vests really make a big difference.
Reflective leg and/or arm bands are also easy and inexpensive. Arm bands will be provided for Commuter Challenge participants — pick up at the front desk of the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex.
4. Don’t pass on the right. Don’t overtake slow-moving vehicles on the right. Doing so makes you invisible to left-turning motorists at intersections.
Passing on the right means that the vehicle you’re passing could also make a right turn right into you, too.
5. Slow down. If you can’t make eye contact with the driver (especially at night), slow down so you’re able to completely stop if you have to. Sure, it’s inconvenient, but it beats getting hit.
To register for the Williams Lake Commuter Challenge that runs June 6-10 visit www.breatheaasywilliamslake.org or in person at the Cariboo Memorial Recreation Complex. Phone 250-398-7665 or 250-392-5997 for more information.
Submitted by Beverley J. Anderson on behalf of the Williams Lake Commuter Challenge Committee. Source: check out www.bicyclesafe.com for more on bike safety.