Safety in Numbers
It’s good to hear about this report which shows an increase in the number of kilometers cycled, combined with a decrease in the number of fatalities. CTC link It is always possible to draw many conclusions from statistics, but, this seems good news. Intuitively as a cyclist you feel there is ‘safety in numbers’ – Cycle in a place where a cyclist is a rarerity (e.g. NY) and it feels more dangerous than a place where cycling is more numerous.
This report certaintly backs up the global statistic (cycle rates by Country) showing a marked correlation between cycling rates and cycling fatalities.
From 2007 to 2008, cycling in the UK increased by 12%, at the same time as a substantial fall in cycling deaths, down from 136 to 115, the second lowest level ever, along with a very small increase of 1% in serious and slight injuries.
The good news is that there is potential for a momentum effect. If more cycle and it becomes safer, the more will be encouraged to cycle and it creates a virtuous circle.
There is a huge difference in cycle rates between different UK Cities.
Bradford has less than 0.5% of journeys taken by bike. It has a serious injury or fatality rate of 100 per 10,000 cycle journeys.
At the other end of the scale, York has a rate of 6% of journeys taken by bike. The serious injury or fatality rate falls to 20 per 10,000 cycle journeys.