Tips for drivers and cyclists, from NZTA and the Ministry of Health
Here are some tips for staying safe while cycling.
- Make eye contact with drivers.
- Regularly check behind you.
- Check your bike regularly – brakes, tyres, chain, reflectors and lights.
- Wear an approved helmet. Make sure it fits firmly and keep it done up. If your helmet gets dented or broken in a crash or dropped heavily, replace it.
- Work on your bike skills. Practise away from traffic.
- Make sure you can be seen – bright-coloured clothes, lights and reflectors all help.
- Ride at least one metre out from parked cars, and watch for drivers opening doors.
- Occupy the centre of the traffic lane when the road width requires it, or when you need to position yourself for a turn.
- Scan ahead for potential hazards like potholes, drain gratings, pedestrians or drivers who have not seen you.
- Know the road rules and follow them.
- Be predictable. Ride in as smooth a line as possible.
- Where possible, choose a safe route.
Here are some tips about driving and cyclists.
- Take special care when driving near a cyclist – slow down when passing them.
- Be prepared for them to move without warning.
- Indicate clearly and in plenty of time when turning and stopping.
- Cycles are vehicles and have as much right to be on the road as you.
- Know your blind spots, especially when driving vans, trucks or buses, and check again for cyclists.
- Take another look at intersections. Cycles are smaller than other vehicles, and many drivers who hit them claim not to have seen them.
- Avoid overtaking a cyclist just before you turn at an intersection.
- Take care when passing cyclists on the open road. Slow down and ideally, leave at least 1.5 metres of space between you and the cyclist.
- Check rear-view mirrors and look over your shoulder before you open a car door at the road side.
- Don’t insist on your right of way, even when the cyclist is in the wrong.
- Slow down and be alert when visibility is reduced. Cyclists are often hard to see, and are even more so in the rain or in low-light conditions.
Available as a pdf, see below.
Printed copies are available through the merchandise section of the Bike Wise website.