- Created: 22 October 2009
Let’s face it; most of us hate the morning commute. There can’t be many people out there who enjoy the bumper-to-bumper crawl through town, the annual fare increases and sardine-tin experience on the train or the gamble that is the damp and dreary wait for the local bus. It’s one of the reasons why sales of scooters and commuter bikes have been enjoying something of a boom in recent years, despite the recession.
With towns and cities becoming increasingly clogged up by traffic congestion, the ability to beat the traffic during rush hour is one of the biggest attractions for new riders to “Get On” two wheels.
Of course, for the new rider, filtering through traffic can be somewhat daunting. Town and city centre driving has its own unique set of potential hazards but by following a few simple tips, you can help yourself to a stress-free commute.
It’s important to keep your concentration when filtering through traffic. Motorists have a tendency to inadvertently let their mind wander whilst they are stuck in traffic and so you need to anticipate that a driver may decide to change lanes or make a sudden movement without checking their mirrors.
Be aware of vehicles emerging from junctions in between queues of traffic. The view for the driver leaving the junction is likely to be obscured by the vehicle that is letting them pull out, particularly if the driver intends to turn right, in which case he will come across your path should you happen to be filtering through.
If you’re riding between lines of cars, actively look for indications of what the driver and passengers are doing. If a driver or passenger intends on getting out it could result in a door being opened on you.
When overtaking, make sure you look out for the vehicle you’re about to go past moving into your path, so you can avoid a parked car or cyclists. Also remember that cyclists often change quickly between lanes.
Also remember to pay special attention to road surfaces. Potholes are an unfortunate reality of town riding. Look ahead and make sure you pay attention to any sort of road surface imperfections.