To share the road with bicyclists safely, it’s important to avoid common errors. Most bicycle-car accidents occur where cars or bikes are turning or simply because of distraction. Give plenty of space around bike lanes to avoid getting near cyclists. Watch out for hand signals and know some of the more common ones. Avoid distractions whenever you’re driving, but especially in areas with lots of bikers. And finally, always assume other drivers could make unpredictable moves and be prepared. By knowing some common ways to avoid accidents with bicyclists, you can be a better driver on the road.

Share the Road with Bicyclists Safely: Avoid Common Mistakes

Give Plenty of Space

One way to share the road with bicyclists more safely is to give plenty of space around them. Even if there is a designated bike lane, keep your car as far from the bike as you can. It can be uncomfortable for bikers when cars pass too closely. Watch out for bike lanes that go in unexpected places, especially at intersections. Sometimes the bike lane will be located between car lanes, rather than on the side of the road.

Watch for Common Hand Signals

It’s important to also watch for hand signals when you share the road with bicyclists. Bikers typically signal to cars and other vehicles when they are about to turn. When they are traveling in a large group, look for the lead cyclists to be giving signals. Also know some basic signals, like holding the left arm straight out to show a coming left turn. To signal a right turn, they will hold their left arm out at a 90-degree angle with a hand towards the sky.

Avoid Distractions

One of the most important rules of the road, in general, is to always avoid distractions. But this is especially important when you share the road with bicyclists. Never drive while texting or using your phone except for speaker calls. If you need to look at a map, always pull over safely. Also, try to avoid eating messy foods or doing anything that causes you to take your eyes off the road.

Assume the Worst

Finally, one important rule for good defensive driving is to assume the worst. This is also true when you share the road with bicyclists. It’s always best to assume that other cars or bikes might swerve in front of you, or turn unexpectedly. You also never know when cyclists could take a fall. If you keep plenty of stopping distance, and space around other vehicles, you should be able to stop in time. Always be prepared to avoid a collision at any moment when driving. It’s important to share the road with bicyclists safely so that you avoid accidents. Collisions between cars and bikers can be especially dangerous. Always give plenty of space around bicycles and be mindful of bikes lanes. In addition, watch for some common hand signals from any biker in front of you so you know when they are turning or stopping. Always avoid distractions when driving. And finally, assume that at any moment a biker might make an unexpected move. By always being on the lookout for other drivers’ erratic behavior, you’ll make yourself a better defensive driver and more likely to avoid accidents of any kind.