Cyclists unprepared for winter riding

October 22, 2013 | By | In News

Nearly half of all cyclists admit to not being adequately prepared for cycling in the dark, according to research conducted by Autoglass.

With the clocks going back on this weekend, many cyclists will find themselves riding in much darker conditions. Commuting cyclists are particularly at risk, but a poll of 1000 riders showed that a staggering 63 per cent of those cycling to work do not ensure they can be seen properly by kitting themselves out with lights and high-visibility clothing.

Over half of cyclists (57 per cent) stated they could do more to make themselves more visible to other road users as the nights draw in.

Worryingly, cyclists who regularly use vital safety equipment are in the minority, with just 39 per cent wearing high-visibility clothing every time they go for a ride. Use of lights was similarly low with only 42 per cent of riders using a bike headlamp and 27 per cent using a brake light on a regular basis.

Despite not voluntarily opting to use such safety kit, a third of cyclists surveyed would support legislation forcing the use of high-visibility jackets.

A fifth also thought improved street lighting would improve safety for cyclists.

The research found that it is younger riders who are particularly likely to be unprepared for the decrease in daylight hours, with 60 per cent of 18-24 year olds gambling with their safety by not using visibility equipment and 50 per cent of this age group admitting to having an accident or near miss with another road user.

Younger riders are also more likely to use distracting devices such as iPods when cycling.

As a motorist do you problems with insufficiently visible cyclists? What do you think can be done to solve the problem? Have your say below.

Picture: Fotolia

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