Cycle safety

Cyclists on the road

We want everyone who takes part in our bike rides to enjoy themselves and to stay safe so we've put together some top tips for staying safe. 

Remember you're taking part in a ride, and not a race. 

Top tips for staying safe

Cycle safely

  • Follow the highway code – all the usual road traffic laws apply
  • Do not cross into the oncoming carriageway where the route is open, it is both dangerous and illegal
  • Stop at all red traffic lights
  • Always look out for hidden bends and potholes
  • Do not speed, especially down steep hills. The route could be busy and you could hit someone or something
  • Obey all instructions from marshals, police and event staff
  • Don’t wear headphones or use your phone
  • If your bike breaks down get off the road quickly

Cycling in a crowd

  •  Obey all instructions from marshals, police and event staff
  •  The route may be crowded - please be patient
  •  Keep a safe distance from other riders
  •  Never undertake and be cautious when overtaking busy sections
  •  Be considerate of other riders and stay to the left of the road so faster cyclists can pass
  •  Stay safe when group cycling on the roads by using these five hand signals from British Cycling

Stop safely                                                                                                                                  

  • Stop safely using the correct hand signal                                                                  
  • Don't stop on any highways - pull into a layby                                                                            
  • Call the emergency number given to you on the day if you need urgent assistance

Along the route

  • Respect all cyclists, motorists and pedestrians and slow down when you pass horse-riders                                                                           
  • Don't ride on pavements unless directed to do so.
  • If you spot an accident, stay with anyone who’s injured and inform the police or marshals immediately. Call 999 if in doubt                               
  • Leave the communities you pass through as you find them - don’t drop litter or damage property                                        
  • Respect the local residents and keep the noise down
  • Make sure to stay hydrated and do not ride under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Dangerous riding will result in you being excluded from the event

Your bike and kit

Get your kit ready in good time, check out our cycling kit list for the essentials.

  • Make sure your bike is in good working order - check your brakes, gears and tyres                                                                              
  • You must wear a helmet - this will reduce the risk of a head injury if you’re in an accident
  • While taking part in a BHF cycle event the use of a helmet conforming to a recognised safety standard is mandatory
  • Failure to wear a helmet will result in you being excluded from the event
  • Make sure you carry your kit comfortably and safely while riding
  • Check the weather forecast and dress appropriately
  • Learn how to mend a puncture with our simple guide

Night riding

  •  If you're riding at night you must have the appropriate lights on your bike. You're legally obliged to have steady front and rear lights          
  •  Wearing reflective and fluorescent clothing is a must; make sure your top layer is reflective

Take a look at our cycling at night tips for more information

Insurance

We recommend, and you are responsible for, arranging your own adequate insurance protection to cover your participation during the event British Cycling have more great tips for cycling in events. 

We love organising cycling events. It’s important everyone abides and respect the rules of the road so we can continue holding bike rides and fighting for every heartbeat on two wheels.

stay on the left

If you have been training and think you will be able to get up it, stay on the right.