Here is some tips on cycling etiquette, or rules of the road, which should to be followed for safety. Here are the key ideas:
Teamwork - Give a helping hand, watch for problems (loose straps, loose equipment), and help each other to be safe and enjoy the ride.
Be Predictable - Group
riding requires even more attention to predictability than riding
alone. Other riders expect you to ride straight, at a constant speed,
unless you indicate differently.
Communicate - Use hand and verbal signals to communicate with members of the group and with other traffic.
Hand Signals - Hand
signals for turning and stopping are as follows: Left are straight out
to signal a left turn. Left arm out and down with you palm to the rear
to signal slowing or stopping. And, for a right turn, put your right
arm straight out (in areas where this is legal) or put your left arm
out and bent up.
Verbal Warnings - Along
with hand signals, verbally warn cyclists behind you of your changes in
direction or speed. The lead rider should call out "left turn," "right
turn," "slowing," stopping," etc. Announce a turn well in advance of
the intersection, so that members of the group have time to position
Announce Hazards - When
riding in a tight group, most of the cyclists do not have a good view
of the road surface ahead, so it is important to announce holes,
gravel, grates, and other hazards. Indicate road hazards by pointing
down to the left or right, and by shouting "hole," "bump," etc., where
required for safety. Everyone in a group should be made aware of
hazards. However, not everyone needs to announce them.
Change Positions Correctly
- Generally, slow traffic stays right, so you should try to pass others
on their left. Say "on your left" to warn the cyclist ahead that you
are passing. If you need to pass someone on the right, say "on your
right" clearly since this is an unusual maneuver.
Watch For Traffic Coming From The Rear
- Even when you are occupying the proper lane position, it often helps
to know when a car is coming. Since those in front cannot see traffic
approaching from the rear, it is the responsibility of the riders in
back to inform the others by saying "car back." Around curves, on
narrow roads, or when riding double, it is also helpful to warn of
traffic approaching from the front with "car up."
Watch Out At Intersections
- When approaching intersections requiring vehicles to yield or stop
the lead rider will say "slowing" or "stopping" to alert those behind
to the change in speed. Each cyclist is responsible for verifying that
the way is clear before enter the intersection.
Leave A Gap for Cars -
When riding up hills or on narrow roads where you are impeding faster
traffic, leave a gap for cars between every three or four bicycles.
This way motorists can take advantage of shorter passing intervals and
eventually move piecemeal around the entire group.
Move Off the Road When You Stop
- Whether you are stopping because of mechanical problems or to regroup
with you companions, move well off the road so you don't interfere with
traffic. It is usually best for the lead rider to pull forward in the
stopping area and for other riders to pull in behind the rider in front
of them. When you start up again, each cyclist should look for, and
yield to, traffic.
Ride One Or Two Across -
Ride single file or double file as appropriate to the roadway and
traffic conditions and where allowed by law. Even where riding double
is legal, courtesy dictates that you single up when cars are trying to
pass you if the lane is wide enough for them to safely do so.
Wait At Turns - If the
group becomes at all separated, even by a few dozen meters, someone
should wait at the turn until the next rider arrives at the
intersection, and so on until all riders have made the turn.
Two At The End - For
safety and as a courtesy, if the group spreads out, the last two people
should adjust their speed to ride as a pair. If either should need
assistance they will have a helping hand.