Safety in Numbers Leads to Less Bike Accidents in Philly

Despite more bicyclists on its streets, Philadelphia has seen a marked reduction in bike crashes and deaths. With double the amount of cyclists on downtown streets since 2002, the decline is being attributed to more visibility to motorists.

Paul Nussbaum reports on Philadelphia's dramatic decline in accidents involving bicycles, from a high of 1,040 in 1998 to 553 in 2010, which officials and advocates attribute to the "safety in numbers" phenomenon.

"'Where cars expect to find bicyclists and pedestrians, drivers are more cognizant of cyclists and pedestrians,' said Alex Doty, executive director of the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia. He cited a study in Portland, Ore., that found a doubling of the number of bicycles reduced the crash risk by one-third."

"I know I get better treatment now than I did 10 years ago, or even five years ago," Doty said. "Drivers have a better idea what to do. Though there is still quite a bit of room for improvement."

"If more biking means safer biking, safer biking is likely to produce more biking," says Nussbaum.

 

Full Story: More bicyclists means fewer accidents, Phila. finds

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $245
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $16.95 a month

City Coasters

Hand-drawn engraved maps of your favorite neighborhoods are divided up across 4 coasters making each one unique.
$36.00

Wear your city with style!

100% silk scarves feature detailed city maps. Choose from six cities with red or blue trim.
$55.00