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How to stay safe cycling during COVID-19?

21 May 2020

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The UK government have encouraged people to cycle to work, in order to avoid public transport, if it’s not possible for them to work from home during the current Covid-19 pandemic. Many people are also taking up cycling as part of their daily exercise.

Whilst cycling is great for improving your health and fitness, it is important to remain safe on the roads and to maintain social distancing.

What is the Government advice on exercising outdoors?

As of 13th May 2020, the Government advice for exercising outdoors in England is as follows:

  • You are permitted to exercise outdoors multiple times per day.
  • You can exercise alone, with members of your household or with one other person from outside your household.
  • When cycling, running or walking outside you should maintain at least a two-metre distance from anyone from outside of your household. This means that it may be necessary for you to stop and wait for other to pass at a safe distance, especially on narrow roads and pathways.
  • You are allowed to sit and rest outside.
  • You are permitted to drive to any outdoor, publicly accessible places in England, no matter the distance from your home, to do exercise.
  • The over 70s and people with underlying health issues, that put them at high risk of contracting the virus, should continue stay at home and minimise contact with others.
  • If you or anyone in your household are exhibiting any coronavirus symptoms, you must stay at home.

How can I cycle to work safely?

When cycling to work you need to follow the guidelines set out in the Highway Code. We have set out our cycling to work tips for keeping you safe on the road:

  • Wear cycling safety gear such as a helmet and reflective clothing.
  • Be seen and heard.
  • Plan your route and be aware of the roads.
  • Make sure your bike is in good working order.
  • Make sure you have lights fitted to your bike if cycling late at night or very early in the morning. It is the law to have a red rear light and a white front light when cycling after dusk and before dawn. Read out guide on staying safe whilst cycling at night for more information.
  • Wear reflective clothing if travelling in the dark.
  • Use appropriate signalling when turning left or right or changing road position.
  • If you’re feeling tired or unsafe, dismount.
  • If you need to carry with you equipment, such as a laptop, and change of clothes, use the appropriate luggage. A backpack may suffice, but if you need to carry heavy items, a pannier rack may relieve stress on your back.

How can I stay safe whilst cycling recreationally?

When cycling recreationally, you should follow all of the above advice. Whilst the government advice permits you to cycle in any outdoor public place, you should consider how busy certain places may be before setting off on your journey. It may be difficult to stick to social distancing guidelines when there are a lot of cyclists in one area.

How can I cycle safely as a beginner?

If you’re taking up cycling for the first time or haven’t rode a bike for many years, follow our road cycling tips for beginners:

  • Practice in a safe environment away from traffic such as in your local park.
  • Practice cycling one handed so that you can safely signal when turning left and right.
  • Wear a helmet.
  • Familiarise yourself with and follow the Highway Code.
  • Be alert and plan your route.
  • Maintain social distancing during the Covid-19 outbreak.

What should I do if I’ve been involved in a cycling accident?

If you’ve been involved in a cycling accident, your first priority should be to attend to your injuries. If the accident was caused due to the negligence of another road user, you could be entitled to make a claim.

Contract True Solicitors on 0344 854 7000 or submit your details below and we’ll call you back to discuss your claim. We have over 25 years’ experience handling road traffic accident claims, obtaining compensation and rehabilitation to get our clients back on the road as soon as possible.

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