Road Safety

Intersections

Intersections are high-risk locations for cyclists and motorists. As a cyclist, you need to be especially alert at intersections and be aware of turning vehicles. Many collisions could be avoided by following the rules and the key elements of safe cycling:

  • alertness
  • manoeuvrability
  • predictability
  • visibility 
  • communication

Tips for staying safe at intersections

  • Always observe the traffic around you, anticipate dangers and, particularly at intersections, be alert at all times and aware of turning vehicles.
  • When stopping at lights or stop signs, position yourself to allow sufficient space to manoeuvre.
  • Experienced cyclists recommend moving closer to the middle of the lane when stopped at a light or stop sign to maximize your visibility and allow the space needed during start up.
  • Regardless of how experienced you are, all cyclists will move from side to side as they start up. Once you have enough momentum to maintain a straight line, do a shoulder check and move back to the right side.
  • When stopped at an intersection, never position yourself with your foot on the curb as it encourages motorists to squeeze up beside you. This can result in the driver turning right across your path as you both proceed from the intersection.
  • Passing vehicles on the right side, along the curb, is illegal and very dangerous. If you are on the right side of a vehicle, you may not be able to see the motorist's turn signal and the motorist likely won't be able to see you either.
  • If you’re travelling straight through an intersection, remain in the right-most position on the road and, as you approach, shoulder check for any motor vehicles that might be close behind or attempting to pass by.
  • When approaching an intersection where several vehicles are either slowing or stopped, remain in the right lane and wait for the vehicles to clear before proceeding. Don’t pass vehicles on the right.
  • Treat every driveway and back lane as an intersection and never assume that the motorist has seen you.
  • Don't enter an intersection on a yellow light—they are timed for motor vehicles, not bicycles.
  • At a four-way stop, the first vehicle to stop is the first to proceed. If you arrive at the same time as a motorist, let them proceed first to avoid any possible confusion.