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When cycling in a group we all have a responsibility to look out for others’ safety as well as our own. Here is a list of essential DOs and DON’Ts to remember to keep it safe while cycling.

DO

Follow the Highway Code and wear a helmet at all times - it applies to ALL road-users.

Ensure your bike is road worthy, brakes are fully operational and that your tyres are pumped up to the recommended PSI.

Cycle a maximum of two abreast in 2 close parallel lines.

Ride with 1ft approx. between your front wheel and the back wheel of the rider in front.

Riders at the back of the pack to shout "Car back, single file" if there are vehicles behind. Listen and act on their calls and keep looking forward.

Lead cyclists to navigate and point out hazards in the road by either shouting or using hand signals. Listen to them and act on the calls, and most importantly, repeat them for the cyclist behind you.

Ride directly behind the wheel of the rider in front. If you cycle in the middle of the two wheels you WILL push the cyclist on your outside into the path of passing vehicles.

Brake as gently and smoothly as you safely can when riding in a pack

When on the front keep pedalling. If you freewheel everyone behind will have to brake.

Talk to each other. Point out either with hand signals or shouts, all potholes, manhole covers and other dangers in the road. Follow the hand signals and calls of the riders in front as they will have seen the danger before you.

Ride at a steady pace, keeping the pack as a compact unit

Check over your shoulder for other riders or traffic before moving out to the right

Be a leader. If you make a decision to pull out on a roundabout or junction, you need to call "Clear" or "Wait" to warn the pack of hazards.

If you are feeling tired let people know. Accidents happen when people are tired and lose concentration.

Dress in appropriate clothing for the weather

Bring everything you might need. Appropriate clothing for the weather, puncture kit, tyre levers, inner tubes, pump, multi tool (including chain tool), helmet, waterproof jacket, food, water, money, credit card, mobile, emergency contact details. 
  

DON'T

Overlap wheels, or nudge in between the wheels of the riders in front. You will come off if they move off their line


Ride on tri / aero bars in packs as you will not be able to brake or steer quickly

Make any sudden movements/changes in direction off your line when in the pack. You are responsible for the cyclist behind you, they are following YOUR wheel they need to trust you.

Ride off the front. This is a group ride, not a race. If you want to go faster then let the others know what you are going to do and if no one wants to join you then go off and enjoy your ride alone.

Stop pedaling if you are on the front, even on downhills. The cyclists behind you will read this as you slowing and could be forced to brake and bunch up.

"Zone out" on the wheel in front. Keep aware of everything that is going on around you, look ahead and that way you can avoid most hazards.

Whip round the outside of the pack to get to the front unless in an emergency. Shout up the pack any communication. If you do need to get to the front then make sure you check in front and behind for cars, remember three abreast will push you out into on coming traffic.

Pull out at junctions without looking, having heard the "Clear" call from a fellow cyclist. Check whether there is a vehicle coming yourself.  

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