Cycling Accidents: The Facts

The majority of cycling accidents take place in built-up urban areas. Further evidence has shown that almost two-third of fatal road collisions involving cyclists take place at or near road junctions – T-junctions have been found to be the most common culprits. Roundabouts have also been pinpointed as dangerous for cyclists too.

As you would expect the extent of the injuries cyclists suffer is dependent on the speed limit and so more serious injuries take place on higher speed roads. Almost 50% of all cycling fatalities take place on rural country roads.

Looking at accidents from a time perspective, statistics show that 80% of accidents take place in day light, again, when most cyclists use the roads and the most dangerous times to be cycling tend to be between 3pm and 6pm and again between 8pm and 9pm. Cycling accidents at night are shown to be more likely to result in fatalities.

Some Key Cycling Accident Facts

Evidence has shown that:

  • 75% of fatal and serious accidents occur in mainly urban areas
  • 75% occur near or at road junctions
  • Nearly 25% of cyclists in accidents are children
  • Around 75% of fatalities are due to serious head injuries

Reasons for Accidents

The majority of accidents involving child cyclists are often due to the child in question playing on their bike, attempting tricks and losing control due to this. For adult cyclists accidents are most likely to be due to road traffic collisions although around 15% of fatal cyclist accidents reported to the authorities are due to the rider losing control and no other vehicle involvement.

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The main reason for accidents which involve a collision is often the classic failed to look properly, usually at junctions. Not looking properly can result in fatalities so it is essential all road users become more aware. Other common reasons include poor turning, carelessness due to being in a rush and of course due to the consumption of alcohol or illegal substances.

Another of the main reasons for accidents which needs to be taken note of is when cyclists choose to enter the road from the pavement or chooses to cross moving traffic via pavements and pedestrian crossings. Obviously pavements aren’t for cycling on but this doesn’t mean all cyclists obey the rules.

The most dangerous vehicle for cyclists is the heavy goods vehicle. HGVs are particularly dangerous as they have impaired vision. When HGVs are turning left as a junction they run the risk of not seeing or colliding into cyclists to their left and therefore it makes more sense of cyclists to stay well back or in front.

Taking a look at some of the facts that relate to cycling accidents it’s clear that they happen when people aren’t paying attention, are flouting the Highway Code or are simply focused on other things. When you’re on the road it is integral you focus your energies on the task in hand and ensure you get to your destination safely.

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