It’s that tricky time of year (trick or treat pun intended) when any thoughts of retaining a summer outlook are quashed by the clocks going back and dark evenings drawing in. As a cyclist it’s easy to get caught out by the gloom, out on the road without proper lighting, virtually invisible to other road users.
On Monday afternoon we teamed up with The City of London Corporation and Thames Tideway at Blackfriars Bridge offering free lights, bike safety checks and advice to passing cyclists. We were happy to help make City cyclists safer…. and legal! The event was a great success, with every cyclist going back on their way with a brighter outlook.
“My back light battery had run out, so helpful that the City of London were there to save the day” Dr Elizabeth Cecil, Imperial College
“Lifesavers” said Tom Shuttleworth
Whilst cycling is still on the whole a safe form of transport, this time of year sees a dramatic spike in accidents when commuters are on their way home. (Records show that November 2016 was the worst month for City road user injuries since May 2007.) With increasing numbers of commuters taking to their bikes, we are beginning to see the rule makers taking a serious focus on safety.
Chris Hayward, Chairman of the Planning & Transportation Committee at the City of London Corporation said:
“The City Corporation are concerned not only that cyclists can be seen at night by vehicles, but also that pedestrians can see them and that they have working brakes should a pedestrian step out in front of them.
These figures demonstrate the increased danger of darker nights, so we urge vulnerable road users to be more vigilant in checking their kit as well as their surroundings.”
With this in mind, we’ve teamed up with City of London to give out FREE bike lights with every bicycle service in November. So not only can you make sure your bike is roadworthy, but you’ll not get your collar felt by the boys in blue for riding without lights!
As for the hi-viz debate, at the end of the day it is down to personal choice (although it is recommended in the Highway Code – Rule 59). We also think it’s no bad thing to make yourself as visible as possible, whether you choose to do so through extra lights or your clothing, as the saying goes be safe, be seen!
The havebike team…