BikesureBlog and SMIDSY
On the theme of bikes, the South Gloucestershire constabulary have been running a campaign emphasising the importance of keeping an eye out for bikes.
Bikers can read their tips for motorcyclists at the BikesureBlog, but here are there top tips for car drivers, which will help you avoid hitting a biker and saying (as has been said to me) “Sorry mate, I didn’t see you.” or SMIDSY as the police have christened this type of accident.
Of course, most of this applies to keeping an eye out for cyclists as well.
- At Junctions:
- When coming out from a side road, be careful if there are parked cars or large vehicles obstructing your view of a motorcyclist.
- Before turning left, make sure a motorcyclist isn’t on your inside, and before turning right, make sure a motorcyclist isn’t on your outside.
- Give motorcyclists room at roundabouts.
- Don’t squeeze motorcyclists’ space at traffic lights. It can make them accelerate faster to get a lane.
- When Overtaking:
- Give motorcyclists as much room as you would a car. They might need it to avoid – a pothole, a manhole cover, a loose surface.
- Don’t overtake when you can’t give enough room – for example, where the road narrows.
- Don’t overtake when approaching a junction.
- Dont overtake and fill the motorcyclists braking distance gap.
- When Parked:
- After parking, check for motorcyclists before opening your door, and get passengers behind you to do the same.
- Ensure Mirrors and windows are cleaned before moving off, particularly in bad weather.
- When pulling away from the kerb, look out for motorbikes. They have a narrower profile than other vehicles, which can make them harder to see.
- General Driving Tips:
- Do not use your mobile telephone – even hands free detracts from your concentration.
- Remember that whilst motorcycles are very manoevrable, on a wet road it is difficult to safely swerve or brake hard to avoid a car suddenly pulling out.
- Do not park close to junctions, even for a short period because you restrict the view of riders and drivers trying to emerge.
- We are all road users in one way or another, be patient, be courteous and enjoy your driving.