Nervous cyclists who stay closer to the side of the road in hopes they won’t get hit might actually be making their bike commute more unsafe. You’re better off being loud and in the way — even if it might seem a little annoying.
Daniel Dansky from Cycle Training UK, who teaches bicycle commuters how to keep safe on the road, explained to Dan Whitworth at BBC that nervous cyclists who try too hard to be careful may actually be putting themselves in more danger. For example, staying as far to the side of the road as possible might seem like the safe thing to do, but it makes it easy for drivers and pedestrians to ignore you. When you do that, drivers don’t treat you like another traveller on the road, pedestrians are more likely to step out in front of you and parked drivers might open their car door in your path. Dansky recommends you make yourself bigger and more noticeable instead. Follow the rules of the road, but take the full lane where it’s appropriate, make yourself visible in the bike lane when there is one, ring your bell as much as you want and do whatever it takes to make sure you’re constantly being seen and heard, no matter how annoying you might think you’re being.