David Cameron nearly came a cropper after the brakes on his bicycle failed. As you may remember the bike had been nicked and then returned, I don't know whether the brakes had been tampered with, or damaged etc but I'm sure that the conspiracy theorists will have plenty to talk about.
The lesson to learn from this is that you should do some basic checks of the bike every day that you ride. Do these and you should be sound as a pound.
Tires: Give them a little squeeze to check that they haven't lost air since the last ride.
Brakes: Apply the front brake and then try to roll the bike forward make sure it doesn't move. Do the same with the back brake.
Headset: Apply both brakes and try to roll the bike forward, there should no wiggle or rocking of the front forks.
Wheels: Lift up the front of the bike, spin the wheel and check that it isn't buckled, do the same with the back brake.
This should only take a few seconds and could save your life. The more detailed checks can be done when you clean your bike.
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