With many people taking up cycling in 2020, a leading charity is advising new riders not to be caught out by the clocks turning back by making sure their bikes are fitted with lights during the winter months.
British Summer Time ended at 2am on 25 October, meaning lighter mornings but darker evenings for the school run or commute.
Cycling UK believes cyclists, like all road users, should ‘behave responsibly and within the law’ and ensure that they and their cycles are visible at night.
Cyclists are required to have white front and red rear lights lit at night (flashing lights are now permitted). Cycles must also be fitted with a red rear reflector, and amber pedal reflectors if they were manufactured after 1 October 1985.
Cherry Allan, Cycling UK’s campaigns and policy co-ordinator, said: “With more people than ever choosing to cycle for their commute or for the journey to school, it’s important all cyclists understand the regulations on lights.
“It’s time to light up, not just so cyclists can see where they’re going but also to help you be seen by other road users.”
With road defects being harder to spot in the darker hours, and autumnal leaf fall and damp road conditions potentially creating a slip hazard for people cycling, Cycling UK is also urging drivers to be especially aware of cyclists and to give them extra space while overtaking.
Cherry Allan added: “Cycling UK always asks for people driving to be aware of cyclists and give them plenty of space when overtaking, but especially now that the evening commute for the vast majority of people is in darkness.”
Figures show between May and July 2020, 38% of people reported to cycle more than before the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic.