Recently, there has been a series of road rage incidents and accidents where cyclists were injured badly. While this may deter newbie cyclists from feeling safe on the roads, it had made some of the more seasoned cyclists more aggressive towards drivers, which in turn sparked quite a lot of controversy amongst Singaporean road users. I, myself had been also involved in an accident about 3 years ago so I do understand the plight of cyclists who have been unintentional victims.
That being said, I do follow a set of principles which I would like to share with you on safe cycling:
- Use appropriate hand signals while cycling
Let fellow cyclists and drivers know if you are switching lanes or filtering using hand signals IN ADVANCE so that there is some time for them to react to your movement and slow down if required. Do ensure that you catch the attention of the driver/cyclist before you make a move to prevent any accidents from behind.
- Ride on the correct side of the road and in view of drivers
It is strongly advisable to cycle on the double-yellow line if you are alone on a road with heavy traffic so that drivers do not get too angry with you hogging the roads. Ensure that you are not cycling too close to the vehicles as there are blind spots where the driver is unable to see the cyclists to prevent getting side-swept.
- Give way to drivers who might seem like they are in a rush and smile
If you do meet an impatient driver or drivers who seem like they are rushing for time, allow them to go first instead of being aggressive. In such a situation, it would not benefit you to show aggression to the driver as the cyclist would usually be on the losing end should there be an accident. Smiling would also help to banish some frustrations built J
- Be visible especially while cycling in dark areas
Remember your front and rear lights while cycling late at night or early morning, wear brightly coloured clothing so that you appear more visible to drivers.
- Be alert on the roads
It is strongly not advisable to put on earpiece and listen to music while cycling on the roads as it might lower your level of awareness especially when incoming cars horn and distract you from concentrating on the dangers on the road. While Singapore’s roads are fairly smooth, there are potholes, items littered on the roads, large gaps which may cause you a nasty fall if you are not alert while cycling.
Let’s strive to be gracious road users to make the roads friendly and safe for all!
Sarah is a full-time HR executive doing talent management and an athlete. She was selected to join the national developmental team for cycling and was roped in to be a pilot (guide sitting in front of a tandem bike) for a visually-impaired athlete for tandem-cycling. She is now part of the Paracycling Federation of Singapore as a volunteer pilot for the visually-impaired. If you’re curious and like to find out about how she trains and how Astavita Sports has helped her, follow her journey here!