The ACT has some of the best infrastructure in Australia for cyclists and with more than 3 million people riding a bike each week in Australia, cycling should be a safe way to get around.
Advertisements have started cropping up about the proper distance for motorists to maintain when approaching or passing a cyclist on ACT roads.
Cyclists are vulnerable road users. Cyclists can also be held accountable if they cause an accident.
As a cyclist, the best way to remain safe when driving in traffic is to follow the road rules.
But what if you’re involved in a bike on bike collision?
If you are injured and/or your bike is damaged you should (as with a motor vehicle accident)
- Call the appropriate emergency services if your injuries are serious;
- If possible, exchange contact information with each other;
- Write down the make and model of both bikes;
- Take down names/addresses of any witnesses.
The ACT Courts use the term ‘reasonable care’ as a measuring stick to decide if the potentially at-fault cyclist was riding their bike in a safe manner. An example of this would be if the at-fault cyclist failed to keep a proper lookout for dangerous debris on the path or road, causing an accident.
Adopting safety measures is important for the safety of all road users. Common sense tips include wearing bright or reflective clothing and wearing an approved helmet no matter where you’re riding. Keeping your bike well maintained is sensible as well.
It’s also important to know that it is a legal requirement that cyclists display lights on the front and rear of the bike as well as a rear reflector. Both lights need to be clearly visible for at least 200 metres while the reflector needs to be visible from 50 metres.
Protect yourself and your bike by checking your home & content insurance, purchase bike insurance, be aware of where you’re riding and follow all traffic rules. Report any hazards – pot holes, tree root intrusions or any other maintenance issues to either Access Canberra or Queanbeyan City Council. Maintain a safe distance from other cyclists, ensure you can be seen by all road users and ride for your life.