Cycle Safety

Cycling is a great way to get around London, but keeping safe is paramount.

Whilst there’s a lot of media hype around cycling accidents, the number of accidents per mile travelled is actually very low. Nonetheless, it’s important to know where you should be on the road and how you should react around other vehicles in order to minimise the risk of accidents.

We've pulled out a few key tips below, but for some more comprehensive advice take a look at these cycling sites:

Highway code for cyclists

Sustrans road safety advice

Safety Tips

Don’t cycle too close to the kerb

If the road is too narrow for vehicles to pass you safely, it may be safer to ride towards the middle of the lane to prevent dangerous overtaking by other vehicles.

Don't weave

Ride in a straight line, don't weave in and out of parked cars. If you're cycling past parked cars, leave a doors width of room between you and the vehicles in case a door opens suddenly.

Take care around heavy goods vehicles

HGVs often have areas to the front, back and sides where they have very limited visibility, and where you should avoid cycling. Stay well back behind buses and HGVs, especially at junctions. Don’t assume you’re safe to undertake an HGV to get to the Advanced Stop Box - the lights might change and the driver may pull away without knowing that you’re there – it’s often safer to stay behind. If you do cycle into the Advanced Stop Box, make eye contact with the driver to be sure they have seen you. Check out our Exchanging Places page if you'd like the opportunity to spend time in the cab of an HGV and learn more about blind spots and safe road positions.

Be seen

If you’re riding at night, by law you must have working lights and reflectors. The legal requirement is for a white front light, red back light, rear reflector and pedal reflectors to be used between sunset and sunrise. Make sure your back light is not obscured by a backpack or pannier rack.

Stop at the lights

Always stop at red lights - you can be fined £50 for jumping a light, as well as endangering yourself, other road users and pedestrians, and giving cyclists a bad name.


If you’d like some more advice, why not sign up for one of our free cycle confidence training sessions? Here a trained instructor will teach you more about cycle safety and how to keep safe on the road.