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Fleet safety tip: Driving around bicycles

Just like drivers in cars, bicyclists have a right to be on the road. It’s important to be mindful, keep your eyes open for cyclists and share the road with them.

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Follow these tips for safe driving around cyclists:

  • If you're attempting to pass a cyclist, pass only on the left, not on the right.
  • To pass a bicyclist safely:
    1. Make sure there is no oncoming traffic on the opposite side of the road
    2. Give yourself enough room between you and the cyclist; don’t get too close
    3. Look over your shoulder before moving back
  • Do not drive distracted. During a simple three-second glance down to your cell phone, when traveling at 70 miles per hour, you travel over the length of a football field. Stay alert and keep an eye out for cyclists.
  • Remember that cyclists are more vulnerable than someone in a vehicle. They often only have a helmet to protect them.
  • Bikers can be hard to see, especially at night.
    1. Watch for flashing or reflective lights
    2. Look for hand signals
  • Check your surroundings before making a right turn to avoid hitting a cyclist.
  • Check your mirrors before opening your car door to avoid hitting a cyclist and causing them to fall.
  • The bike lane serves a purpose – to keep the cyclist safe. It’s not for drivers to have a little extra room in their lane. Mind your boundaries.
  • Don’t assume a cyclist can hear your vehicle coming from behind. Be cautious and, if necessary, give them a little honk to be sure they know you’re there.

If an accident occurs between a cyclist and a car, the car will win. According to the IIHS, each year about 2% of motor vehicle crash deaths are bicyclists and in 2016, 835 were killed in a crash. Don’t be a part of the statistic, drive safely around bicycles.

For more safe driving tips, visit Element's Tips and Advice page.

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