At first make sure that your bike is in proper condition, there are some standard requirements that are necessary on your bike.
Standard requirements include:
- a bell (that functions correctly and is fixed in a convenient position);
- an effective foot operated or hand operated rear wheel brake;
- a red reflector fitted to the rear; and
- a yellow side reflector (visible from both sides) on each wheel and yellow reflectors fitted to both side edges of each pedal.
Further for your safety:
- Ride at a safe speed that is suitable to the conditions, infrastructure and number of users. This includes slowing down as needed when space is limited or if you cannot see clearly ahead;
- Don't use a mobile phone or earphones while cycling;
- Be aware of drivers blind spot and opening of doors, try for eye contact with car drivers at lights;
- Ride a meter from the curb in a straight line. Avoid weaving in and out of traffic; and
- Whilst it is legal to ride two abreast on a road, consider riding single file when road infrastructure makes it difficult or dangerous for a motorist to pass you.
When cycling you must wear an approved helmet. This means that the helmet must be of a standard approved by the Director General of the Department of Transport. At present, these only include helmets that comply with AS/NZS 2063:2008 – Bicycle helmets. All approved helmets must be sold with a compliance sticker attached.
When travelling with a child in a child carrier seat or a passenger in a trailer is being towed by a bicycle, they must also wear approved helmets.
When riding in hazardous weather, dusk, dawn or dark conditions, a bicycle must also have:
- a front light showing an unbroken or a flashing white beam that is clearly visible from 200 metres; and
- a rear light showing an unbroken or flashing red beam that is clearly visible from 200 metres;
When sharing roads and paths with other road users:
- Use a bell, avoid surprising people;
- Signal your attentions (slowing, passing, turning, etc.);
- Slow down when approaching pedestrians and slower riders);
- Be courteous and patient with pedestrians and other path users who are moving slower than you, shared paths are for sharing, not speeding;
- Only overtake when there is enough room and it is safe to do so;
- Do not ride in group formation on a Principal Shared Paths (PSP); and
- Do not join/form groups unless you are trained/ experienced.
In 2013 we provided funding support to Dismantle to run a series of bike maintenance and cycle safety workshops. Check out the video that was produced as a result below: