Safety and General Guidelines

 

General Guidelines

 

1. Members

  • Club rides and events are for members, non-members must sign a waiver which the ride leader will provide. Non-members can join in 2 rides and then must join the Club

  • Cyclists must carry paper identification and are encouraged to carry a cell phone.

  • Helmets

    • All members and guests must wear an approved bicycle helmet on all club rides.

    • It is illegal for cyclists under the age of 18 to ride without an approved helmet.

    • Helmets should fit properly

  • Each cyclist should be able to fix their own basic problems such as a flat tire. Always carry a spare inner tube that is the correct size for your wheels.

  • Young Cyclists (under 12) are strongly encouraged to read the “Young Cyclists Guide” published by the Province of Ontario. The Club can provide a copy.

  • Don’t assume motorists can see you.

  • Be courteous and respectful of motorists and other road users. Most will return your courtesy. This is also important to leave a positive image for our Club.

  • Do not ride on the sidewalk unless absolutely necessary.

 

2. Bicycles

 

  • Bikes must be proper type, frame and size with all equipment properly functioning.

  • Lights

    • Cycles must have proper front and rear lights.

    • It is illegal to ride from ½ hour before sunset to sunrise without proper lights.

  • Horn/Bell - By law, all cycles are required to have a bell or a horn.

  • Mirrors - The Club strongly recommends mirrors to avoid the need to look over your shoulder for traffic approaching from the rear.

  • The type of bike must fit the ride. Road bikes with drop down handlebars are a must when riding in groups going above an average speed of 20 km/hr.

  • Aerobars must not be used when riding in groups.

  • Check with the local bike shops to make sure your bike is fit for the type of rides in which you are participating.

 

3. Road Riding

 

Note that all rules of the road apply to cyclists including traffic lights, stop signs, one way streets, crosswalks, etc.

 

  • Cyclists should ride one meter from the curb or edge of the road or parked cars. Be cautious when passing parked cars in case a motorist opens a door. Do not weave in and out of parking spaces. Maintain your line of travel.

 

  • Where there is no room to safely share the road, it is legal for cyclists to take the whole lane, however on high speed roads or in heavy traffic, this is not recommended.

 

  • Turn Signals (Hand Signals)

    • Left Turn – Left arm straight out. Pointing to the left gives a clearer signal.

    • Right Turn – Right arm straight out. Again, pointing to the right makes a clearer signal.

    • Stop – Left arm out and down 90° from elbow and palm back.

  • Right Turns – traffic does not always watch for cyclists. Be very cautious at intersections. It can be useful to take the whole lane when approaching intersections if traffic is not moving at a high speed.

  • Left Turns – When safe to do so, signal, move to the left lane and complete your turn into the left lane. When safe to do so, move back over to the right lane signaling as you do so.

  • Road Surfaces – Be aware of surfaces and obstacles, holes, rocks, loose and slippery surfaces, especially be cautious at railway tracks, which should always be crossed at right angles to the tracks. Point to hazards when you see them and move left or right to avoid them.

 

4. Group Riding

 

  • Ride in single file, at least one bicycle length apart when biking on a busy road, going up or down hills. Riding double is allowed on quiet country roads, at the discretion of the leader. Never go 3 abreast, irrespective of how good the conversation is.

  • Groups of 12 or more should be broken into smaller groups so that cars are able to safely move back into the right lane in case of oncoming traffic.

  • Stay in line, DO NOT DRIFT, or go outside the bike lane.

  • Focus ahead, do not look back.

  • Speed/Cadence – try to maintain a steady speed. Ride smooth, do not over react, avoid hard braking. If you cannot keep up with the group let others and particularly the leader know.

  • Maintain a reasonable distance from the other cyclists. Touching the wheel of another cyclist will likely cause a crash.

 

  • Ride Leader

    • The leader advises the group of the destination, anticipated speed, who will be sweep and when positions on the line will change.

    • Pick the right group to ride with. The website will indicate the speed at which a group rides and how far each group rides.

    • The ride leader is responsible for all riders and has the authority to decide if a rider is not ready to ride at the speed of the leader’s group. This rider will then be advised to bike with a different group more suited to his/her ability.

    • The lead may be passed to another rider when it is safe to do so.

 

  • Communication

    • The leader must keep the group informed at all times. Verbal messages musts be passed up and down the line – “stopping”, “slowing”, “car back”, “car front” “biker or walker up front”. “All through” at the traffic lights to let the leader know all of the group got through the light. Hand signals should be used to indicate loose stones, glass, holes or other surface hazards.

  • Riders should limit talking in order to keep focused on the ride and road conditions and listen to communication from the leader.

  • Leave No Rider Behind – If a rider has a health or mechanical issue and cannot continue the ride, the rider should not be left alone. “ I am OK you go ahead” will not be a reason to leave a rider alone. No Exceptions to this Rule.

 

5. Accidents

 

In the event of an accident where there is injury, police, EMS should be called immediately and two riders wait with the injured rider. For all accidents a report should be filed with the Club president giving the date, time and details of the accident.

Club Guidelines

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