Vulnerable Road Users
Almost everyone walks and most people, at some time, ride a bicycle. And yet, around 45,000 cyclists and pedestrians are killed or injured on Britain’s roads every year. The driver was found to be at fault in most collisions involving a cyclist and a car. Cyclists are 30 times more likely to be seriously injured in a collision than a car occupant.
Only overtake pedestrians, cyclists and horse riders when you can do so safely. Slow down and give them plenty of room as you drive past.
And remember; cyclists are legally entitled to cycle on the road, even if there is a cycle path or shared path nearby. Many collisions occur at junctions so look out for cyclists and pedestrians. The most common cause is ‘looked but failed to see’. Make eye contact, if possible, so they know you’ve seen them.
Drivers need to be aware that pedestrians can be very unpredictable and may step in to the road without looking. In particular watch out for children and older people who may not have seen or heard you or may be unable to judge your speed. Drive carefully and slowly and be prepared to stop.
To look out for cyclists who may swerve suddenly, for example, to avoid an obstacle, if there is a poor road surface, due to windy weather or car doors opening suddenly. Check for cyclists and pedestrians when opening your own car doors.
Don’t drive into the advanced stop lines or boxes at traffic lights. These allow cyclists to get to the front and increase their visibility and safety. Allow cyclists time and space to move off when the green signal shows.
Be a polite, courteous and considerate driver. Take responsibility for your actions!
The British Horse Society safety Campaign – DEAD SLOW – seeks to educate drivers on how to safely pass horses on the road. Checkout their virtual reality film showing how to safely overtake horses, below.