More cycling can result in more safety, according to UC Denver study

Categories: Bicycling

BikeLane.jpg
Denver Downtown Partnership
Heavier bike traffic can lead to fewer traffic collisions, according to a recent study by the University of Colorado at Denver. The study, though administered by UC Denver research students, focuses on Boulder, given that city's large cycling presence.

See also: Reader: Bicycles should only be allowed on trails and sidewalks -- not roads

The team -- Bruce Janson, professor of civil engineering; Wesley Marshall, assistant professor of civil engineering, and Krista Nordback -- found that the average rate of vehicular collisions was definitely lower at intersections that see more than 200 cyclists daily. "Our studies have hypothesized that when drivers expect to see a significant number of bicyclists on the street, their behavior changes," Marshall says. "They are more likely to look over their shoulder for a bicyclist before making a right turn."

Safety Performance Functions, or SPF, are mathematical equations used my multiple departments of transportation to study and predict the number of collisions in a single area based on the factors impacting it. Though the state has SPF in place for cars, there are none for bicycles. Janson, Marshall and Nordback created their own bike-oriented SPF by studying crashes at two intersections in Boulder where more than two-thirds of that city's accidents occur, and weighing the data with the number of bikes in the area.

"Fortunately, Boulder was one of the first cities to establish a bicycle counting program back in the early '90s," Marshall says, and noting that Boulder was ideal for the study given its high rate of cycling, at 12 percent of the population.

Later studies will examine the relation between higher bicycle usage and more conscientious awareness while driving. "In fact, we are beginning to find that cities with a higher level of bicycling are not just safer for cyclists but for all road users," he says. "Improving the streets to better accommodate bicyclists may enhance safety for everyone."





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24 comments
SxPxDxCx
SxPxDxCx

cue 100+ posts of "cyclist suck" yawn.

Brad Lopez
Brad Lopez

Kayla but you have to ask questions about pricks in spandex who aren't riding bikes #spandexgang

Kayla Marie Gilbert
Kayla Marie Gilbert

dear motorists, try getting on a bike sometime and see it from a different perspective. Not all cyclists are horrible spandex-wearing pricks.

MC Sammer
MC Sammer

Ya if the cyclists learn that they don't own the road and have to obey traffic laws

John Wayne Claybaugh
John Wayne Claybaugh

Bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers of cars. (The difference is I don't have to have a full time job to support my mode of transportation.) I don't run red lights and I ride safely along the right side of the road unless the right side of the road is a right turn lane or a parking lane, or when turning left. The funny thing is that obviously drivers don't know the law. Why the hell does a driver tell me to ride on the sidewalk? That's dangerous and illegal! These idiots with cars need to stop telling me to break the law!

Jay Cismaru
Jay Cismaru

Liberal study by libtards common sense tells you they are wrong

Bradford Ashington
Bradford Ashington

uh huh....yeah, let's just all "evolve" by relying upon a nearly 200 yr old piece of technology to get us around dozens of square miles of urbanized area. u r an idiot

Adam Aedro Drotar
Adam Aedro Drotar

Evolve? I'm pretty sure motorized vehicles is the evolution of the propelled piece of aluminum you stick up your ass. People decided 15 mph wasn't fast enough and WE evolved. You are still a Neanderthal.

Helen Russ
Helen Russ

There is a statement that says slower traffic keep right. Yes I think it includes bikes.

Helen Russ
Helen Russ

I'm a cyclist, I agree that cyclist should stay to the right and follow all street signs and lights..hence why you'll never see a bike lane on the middle of a lane....I was hit by a truck that didn't follow the law. .if hurt a lot

Forrest Bullard
Forrest Bullard

You morons need to evolve. I'm not going to move over for your stupid truck. I wear a go pro for evidence. So suck it!

Duane Talada
Duane Talada

I don't know how sticking a bicycle seat up your ass can lead to anything good.

Andrea Duran
Andrea Duran

No one deserves to get hit by a car Cm. Its hard reasoning with torch weilding villiagers. The angry mob will always flip the car over and light it on fire...

Andrea Duran
Andrea Duran

Nice. I love having informed arguments with someone who calls someone else a dumbass. I work hard, pay taxes, a mother, and to save money on gas I bike to work. I take all the designated bike lanes and consider myself to be a law abiding citizen. But to hold bike riders by same standards is just ridiculous. On your way to work are there constant road blocks? Provide me with your email address and I will send you pics from my ride tomorrow. People constanly blocking bike lanes, cars everywhere like you who hate me for some ignorant reason. And be nicer to your fellow humans Lora. Chill out! Sounds like someone needs a good bike ride! :-)

Andrea Duran
Andrea Duran

Tom please get more informed. California stops for byciclists should be legal. Yup I said it!

Cm Fairbanks
Cm Fairbanks

Hey Andrea Duran Have you ever seen a biker smashed so far into a bike that they cant even get the body out of the bike. Did you know that they don't make body bags big enough for a bike and a body. Everybody is responsible for Safety. Just some of choose to look out for you stupid a** fu**ers. Oh i drive a 7000 pound truck empty. If that doesn't make you nervous, Then you deserved to get hit

Lora McCabe
Lora McCabe

Andrea Duran it because of dumb asses like you that almost cause me to have an accident every single day next time I'll just hit one of you that don't stop at the red light when your light is red and mine is green thinking you can just run right out in front of me

Tom Aigeldinger
Tom Aigeldinger

Andrea Duran, the whole running stop signs/ never signaling lane changes can make for some hairy situations.

Andrea Duran
Andrea Duran

Why must bikers follow rules made for motorized vehicles that can travel at speeds of up to 120mph while weighing around 4,000 pounds? Makes a lot of sense? What if drivers had to open their cars and touch their foot to the ground everytime they stopped? Why oh why are people so ignorant and such haters? So unbelievably frustrating!

Bradford Ashington
Bradford Ashington

"Our studies have hypothesized that when drivers expect to see a significant number of bicyclists on the street, their behavior changes," Indeed....my blood boils and I suddenly develop an urge to run these self-righteous, Spandex-wearing pricks down at full speed.

Tamara Munroe
Tamara Munroe

Yeah, if they would follow the laws and not run red lights, veer all over the road etc. I've never been read ended by a car...only a guy on a bike.

Cm Fairbanks
Cm Fairbanks

Someone is smoking some good crack. You just happen to be talking about some of the most dangerous people out their right now. They cant even stop at a stop sign. They want more rights but can't handle the responsible for the ones the have

Bern Haggerty
Bern Haggerty

Have you seen this Bicyclists Belong in the Traffic Lane?

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