Despite the bicycle boom, Almaty city continues to be extremely uncomfortable for the cyclists, who simply do not have enough space in the non-adapted streets. Man in a saddle always causes a discomfort to everyone.
On the road part he is an obstacle to the traffic and a potential victim; on the sidewalk he becomes a source of danger for the pedestrians, and especially, for the children. But our city has no other options to ensure a clean environment and healthy life-style. Hence, the biking fan has no choice but to adapt.
Some tips for the people, wishing to live a long life
Here are some simple tips that might help someone to save not only the own bike.
1. You need to have a clear idea of where you are on the road or sidewalk and to behave accordingly. Being on the road, you cannot feel yourself as a pedestrian, while on the sidewalk - as a vehicle. The brain must switch at lightning speed, especially at the crossroads, where many cyclists, trying to take advantage of their mobility, easily leap from the roadway to the pedestrian “zebra” crossing. Keep in mind that a car driver is not always capable to foresee such nervous moves of a cyclist (in general, he is not entitled to do so).
2. Many road accidents, involving the cyclists, can occur just because the drivers don’t notice the two-wheeled traffic participants. There could be very different reasons for that: tired “blurred” eyes of a driver, able to react only to the large moving cars, or a driver just ignore the vehicles, which are smaller than his own car and etc. The advice is to start shining on the road, using bright clothes, mirrors, flashing lights and stop signals.
3. The most dangerous cars appear on the right side and push a cyclist to the center of the road. They can be turning out from the side streets to the opposite lane, or the vehicles, proudly sticking their backs out of a street parking. If a bike is equipped with a horn, it is better to blow it, anticipating the accident. But it is always better to slow down anyway. Because a car (unlike yourself) is made of steel.
4. Dogs are the worst enemies of the cyclists. It is their nature. This is also one of real dangers, especially on the countryside roads, where a dog, suddenly attacking from a roadside, can afraid you, causing a sudden move towards the cars. It is better to be bitten than crushed, but this reaction is so natural that everything can happen regardless of the logic. I recommend to slow down and shout, when seeing a dog. Usually, it helps to avoid a conflict.
5. Another delicate point is to turn in the traffic stream. Especially the left turn. If the traffic exceeds the level of your confidence, then it’s better to stop, take your two-wheeled friend up and do not hesitate for a moment to become a pedestrian. Anyway, when turning, you should always remember the old cycling rules and show your intentions by gestures.