While delivering safe urban driving courses throughout the United Kingdom we have gained a better insight about how to reduce the risk of incidents occurring. Our first-hand experience gained from Safe Urban Driving courses has allowed us to witness and experience some preventable incidents, reinforcing the message that Safe Urban Driving is designed to deliver.
We decided to create a list of our top tips for reduce the risk of incidents and increase safety on our roads:
Give cyclists Room
Please give people on cycles plenty of space when overtaking them, leaving as much room as you would a car. Remember that cyclists may need to manoeuvre suddenly to avoid potholes and other hazards. The same goes for windy weather where strong gusts could cause a cyclist to swerve suddenly
Use your senses
Look out for those vulnerable road users who may weave through the traffic. Check your near-side blind-spot every time you turn left and check over shoulder for other VRUs before opening your door. Make sure your side windows are clean at all times and that the view through your windscreen is not obscured in any way by items attached to the glass or placed on the dashboard.
Keep scanning your mirrors
You must keep checking your mirrors, especially when approaching junctions in case a cyclist or other vulnerable road user enters your blind spot. Longer vehicles often need to swing out to the right before turning left to have sufficient clearance—some cyclists may not understand the reason for your manoeuvre and could be tempted to pass you on the nearside. Watch out for them! Before pulling away from junctions, look over the dashboard and try to establish eye contact with any cyclists to show that you can acknowledged them. Keep your mirrors clean and properly adjusted at all times to minimise any potential blind spots, particularly on the nearside. You should inspect the position of your mirrors as part of your daily driver checks
Advanced Stop Lines (ASLs)
Do not cross stop lines or encroach on advanced stop lines at traffic lights. ASLs allow cyclists to increase their visibility by getting in front of your vehicle. Allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows.
While many riders can keep up with the flow of traffic, please be patient with those less speedy and wait behind them until there is sufficient room to pass. Avoid sounding your horn which may unbalance some riders; tooting must only be used to warn of danger.