10 Commandments for City Biking


1. Treat every taxi as though its doors are already open.
Good advice, and the inspiration for this list.  You never know when someone will want to get out of a cab, the best thing to do is stay outside of their reach.

2. If it’s nighttime and you don’t have lights, don’t bother riding.
White in the front, red in the back, required by law. Without them, you’re an invisible obstacle.

3. Know about the “right hook,” and anticipate it.
If you’re approaching an intersection, driveway, or empty parking space, get used to checking behind you for cars turning right—they won’t always check for you.

4. Expect the “left cross,” and learn to look for the signs.
When you’re waiting at a red light, sometimes you can just tell the driver waiting across the intersection is going to try to turn left without waiting for you to cross.  Plan for their recklessness and you can avoid a crash.

5. Build a sense of the door zone and its location as you ride, stay clear of it at all costs.
Hugging parked cars to avoid passing cars is a trap; you’re much more likely to be doored than hit from behind.

6. Practice starting from a foot-down standstill until you can do so without wobbling.
A straight, confident start is an important skill to have in your city biking arsenal.  It will help you get off the line safely, and ahead of traffic.

7. If a vehicle weighs over 5 tons (trucks, busses, etc.), it probably cannot see you.
Even with lots of mirrors, they’re essentially driving blind out there.  You should always give these vehicles a wide berth.  The same goes for anything with a trailer.

8. Plug your handlebar ends.
Not really a tip for city biking, but still important.

9. Stop at all red lights, pause at all stop signs, and yield for pedestrians in crosswalks.
Don’t give them any decent reason to hate us, or the opportunity to blame you for the crash.

10. If you’re in a crash, always get the driver’s information.
The license plate at the very least, but also name, insurance co., and contact info. The same goes for witnesses—don’t rely on the police to record their contact info.


  1. pangolina reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  2. timtimb reblogged this from coreysomething
  3. coreysomething reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  4. intherainyseason reblogged this from bikesafeboston and added:
    To which I will add Commandment 11, which may be the most important, but which you can not follow on your own: Organize!
  5. chimpbaby reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  6. phildupree reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  7. barefootchaos reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  8. palegirlinthecity reblogged this from bikesafeboston
  9. williac reblogged this from bikesafeboston and added:
    #2, people. #2.
  10. bikesafeboston posted this

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