Modes of Transportation – On a Bicycle

Obstacles and Road Surfaces

Potholes, sand, sewer grates, railway tracks and weather conditions are all things to watch out for when riding a bicycle.

Potholes, sand, sharp objects… be on the lookout for hazards on the road!

  • Holes and uneven pavement can pose a risk of falling
    • Avoid such hazards by gradually changing your trajectory and going around them slowly. Be careful not to cut off another user (motorist, motorcyclist, other cyclist, etc.).
  • Slippery or dirt surfaces can make you fall
    • Go slowly and make turns with caution, while keeping your bike as upright as possible.
  • Sharp objects can puncture your tires and cause falls or collisions
    • Watch out for tacks, nails, glass shards, staples, cables, pins, sharp rocks and pieces of metal.
  • Sewer grates, metal plates, rails, etc.
    • All of these surfaces are slippery. Slow down, especially when they are wet.

Railway tracks

Tracks may be slippery when wet.

  • Cross one rail at a time.
  • When approaching railway tracks, signal your intention to slow down.
  • Go slowly and stand on your pedals to cross particularly bumpy railway tracks in order to keep your balance.
  • If the manoeuvre is too risky, get off your bike and cross the tracks on foot.

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Be cautious near railway tracks

Crossing the tracks

1. Look over your left shoulder. Illustration of a cyclist checking over his left shoulder to see if there is a break in traffic before changing lanes.

2. Signal your intention to slow down.Illustration of a cyclist seen from the front, holding his left arm out horizontally to signal his intention to turn left.

3. Look over your left shoulder again.Illustration of a cyclist checking over his left shoulder to see if there is a break in traffic before changing lanes.

4. Go left.

5. Cross the tracks at a right angle.

Useful information

If a train is approaching

You should stop your bike at least 5 metres away from the railway tracks when:

  • signals, lowered barriers or railway employees indicate that a train or other railway vehicle is approaching
  • you see or hear a train approaching a level crossing

Weather conditions

Rain, snow, frost

Rain, snow and frost can make pavement slippery. In such weather conditions, be extra cautious!

Braking and turning properly

Most bikes do not brake well in the rain, even those equipped with integrated brakes or disc brakes.

Here is how to brake in the rain:

  • pedal slowly
  • plan for additional braking distance
  • once the brakes are engaged, brake firmly
  • adherence is poorer on wet pavement. Make turns slowly, without tilting too much

Wet pavement

Puddles can cover cracks or large holes in the pavement. Go around puddles if possible, or go through them slowly.