Shaun Sadlier's blog: Fleets and cycling
26 April 2017
You can't have made even the shortest journey behind the wheel in the last week or two without passing a cyclist - or even dozens of them.
It's the time of year when the hardcore of winter riders are supplemented with a mass of people for whom spring means dusting down their bike and oiling it ready for summer rides.
Cycling in the UK is more popular than ever, with more than two million people climbing onto the saddle at least once a week. That's a huge number and there have been substantial increases in recent years, fuelled by the British team's success in competition, better-designed bikes and more miles of cycle-friendly roads.
What this means for company car and van drivers is a noticeable increase in the number of bikes with which we are sharing the road, something which prompted me to ponder the particular safety risks that they represent.
If you look online, quite a lot of guidance about driver on-road behaviour around cyclists is available, but perhaps the best is from RAC, who manage to condense most of the pertinent information into a few points that could be easily communicated to your drivers. It's worth taking a look at rac.co.uk/advice/advice-for-motorists-and-cyclists.
However, what is perhaps more fundamental is that the sheer number of cyclists on the road in 2017 means that fleets might need to highlight them as a distinct risk for their drivers. This applies to potential hazards ranging from individual riders weaving to work through town to a large group, all clad in lycra, at speed on a country road.
Particularly at this time of year, it could be worth sharing some basic advice with your drivers which directly applies to road use around cyclists. In any clash between car and bike, the latter will always come off much worse, and encouraging a little thought about how to share the road with pedal power may help to prevent a nasty accident.