Riding alongside thousands of cyclists during RAGBRAI is an incredible experience, but it’s important to prioritize safety through effective communication. Many crashes on the route involve multiple bicycles and often occur because riders fail to communicate their intentions. That’s why the RIGHT Communications are essential to keep everyone safe, especially when starting, stopping, or passing.
When entering the roadway, verbalizing “Bike On” is the best way to inform others that you are entering the road. Conversely, when leaving the roadway, make sure to call out “Bike Off.” Law enforcement personnel may occasionally pause riders to let traffic through intersections. If you need to stop, it’s crucial to communicate by saying “Stopping” to alert those around you. In situations where the route becomes congested and your pace slows, call out “Slowing” to inform fellow riders.
At intersections, clearly announce your intended turn by saying “Right Turn,” “Left Turn,” “Turning Right,” or “Turning Left.” This verbal cue should be accompanied by an arm signal pointing in the direction of your turn. While on open roads, everyone turns at the same intersection, town riding presents a different scenario. Always verbalize your direction of travel to enhance predictability for other riders. Additionally, utilize hand signals alongside verbal cues to ensure maximum clarity.
When passing or being passed, you’ll likely hear “On Your Left” countless times throughout the week. This verbal cue indicates that the overtaking rider is passing on the left side of the cyclist being overtaken. There may be occasions when passing on the right is necessary. In such cases, call out “On Your Right” as you pass on the right side of the rider. If two riders are traveling at the same speed, with enough space between them for you to pass through, avoid surprising them by announcing “Passing Through The Middle.”
In conclusion, it’s crucial to remember that you are part of a community on RAGBRAI, and communication is key to ensure everyone’s safety. Consider practicing with a local bicycle club to familiarize yourself with riding in a group and learn the rules of the road. Most clubs dedicate time to teaching new riders about safe cycling practices. By embracing the RIGHT Communications, you will contribute to a safer and more enjoyable RAGBRAI experience for everyone involved. Together, let’s make communication our guiding principle on the journey ahead.
To learn more about the importance of communication and ensuring safety on RAGBRAI, visit our website at www.rideright.org/right-communications/. Discover comprehensive resources and guidelines on the RIGHT Communications to follow while riding with thousands of fellow cyclists. Understanding these essential communication techniques will help create a safer and more enjoyable experience for all participants. Don’t miss out on mastering the art of communication on RAGBRAI!