Many motor vehicles have blind spots where their drivers cannot see cyclists even when they use rear-view and side mirrors. If you are in a driver’s blind spot, you may be at an increased risk of sustaining a serious injury on your bike.
While you probably cannot steer clear of motor vehicles forever, you can take steps to avoid blind spot collisions. Here are three important ones.
1. Use designated bike lanes
Arguably, the best thing you can do to avoid a blind spot collision is to stay far away from cars, trucks and SUVs. If your neighborhood has protected bike lanes, ride in them whenever possible. If you must cycle in the driving lane, stay to the right.
2. Watch motorists’ eyes
You can often tell a great deal about a driver by looking at his or her eyes. For example, you can probably determine if the driver is watching the road or looking at a smartphone. By making eye contact with all drivers you encounter, you can be certain they see you.
3. Expect a collision
Every time you get behind the handlebars of your favorite bicycle, you should consider the real possibility of getting into a collision with a motor vehicle. Even if you never have an accident, this approach may encourage you to ride defensively. It may also keep you from placing yourself and your bike in dangerous blind spots.
Even though you may expect a collision when you ride, you can reduce your chances of having a blind spot accident by riding smartly. If you cannot use a designated riding area, carefully watching drivers may save your life.