[Ken Kifer's Bike Pages]
ARTICLE: KKBP September 2001 Bicycle Safety Survey
The results of a 20-question bicycling survey run for 30 days with 231 cyclists responding. Questions concerned amount of bicycling, kind of bicycling, traffic behavior, traffic attitudes, and injuries.

Bike Pages Home Page

The Cyclist Lifestyle

Bike Commuting and Transportation

Bicycle Camping and Touring

Cycling Health and Fitness

Bicycling Advocacy

Bicycle Traffic Safety

Basic Skills for Cyclists

Cycling Humor and Tales

Bicycling Surveys and Statistics

Links to Other Cycling Sites

Comments on This Page

KKBP September 2001 Bicycle Safety Survey

This survey was a mixture of two kinds of questions: general questions about cyclists and safety questions. I was very hesitant about emphasizing the safety element in this survey as I did not want it to be perceived as an accident survey, thus getting much more attention from those who have busted their heads than from those who have not. Since I wanted the test to have a low profile, I did not advertise the test in newgroups or in mailing lists. This resulted in a lower number taking the survey than I would have preferred, but I feel more comfortable with the results.

NOTE: In this report, the data and the analysis will be presented together. Data will be presented in plain letters, analysis in italics.

There were 231 cyclists who took the survey.

This is a very small number of people for a survey of this kind, and it is by no means a random survey. Therefore, the data should not be considered to represent the entire population of cyclists, although it may be suggestive. This caution is especially true when analyzing parts of the data. For instance, the number of years between bicycling accidents changed almost daily as the results were coming in, as the number was greatly affected by the much smaller group of cyclists who were injuried.

Q.1: What was the age of the survey participants?
There were 2 under 16.
There were 25 between 16 and 24.
There were 40 between 25 and 34.
There were 65 between 35 and 44.
There were 61 between 45 and 54.
There were 34 between 55 and 64.
There were 4 over 65.

The average age was calculated to be 42 years of age. This was calculated by using the average of the ages selected, with those over 65 assumed to average 70 and those under 16 to average 12.

Q. 2: What was the sex of the participants?
There were 208 males.
There were 23 females.

Surveys elsewhere indicate a nearly equal number of male and female bicycle riders; however, males seem to spend more time on the computer (no data), predominate in newgroup discussions and email lists on bicycling, and probably visit my web pages much more often.

Q. 3: What countries were participants from?
There were 164 from the USA.
There were 29 from Canada.
There were 16 from the UK.
There were 6 from Australia.
There were 3 from New Zealand.
There were 3 from Italy.
There were 2 from Germany.
There was 1 from Norway.
There was 1 from Austria.
There was 1 from Sweden.
There was 1 from Bermuda.
There was 1 from the Netherlands.
There was 1 from Denmark.
There was 1 from Belgium.

Due to the high participation from the United States and the much lower participation from elsewhere, I have changed the form on the October test to ask for "area" instead of "country." I would have preferred remaining with countries, but it's impossible to analyze data with only a few individuals.

Q. 4: How far have the participants in the survey bicycled since they were 16 years old?
4 were under 16 years of age.
30 were unable to say.
25 bicycled less than 1500 miles (2500 kilometers).
47 bicycled between 1500 and 6000 miles (2500 to 10,000 kilometers).
67 bicycled 6,000 between 25,000 miles (10,000 to 40,000 kilometers).
48 bicycled between 25,000 and 100,000 miles (40,000 to 160,000 kilometers).
6 bicycled between 100,000 and 150,000 miles (160,000 to 250,000 kilometers).
4 bicycled over 150,000 miles (250,000 kilometers).

Here is a problem in giving any survey; if you ask the same question twice, you get two different answers. In the first question, I asked how many were under 16 and received the answer of two. Now, just two questions later, the answer is four. Few people lie when taking surveys, but many people will change their answer if asked more than once.

The data indicates a good bit of cycling. Using the half-way point of each range, the computer calculated that participants have ridden a total of 5,785,000 miles since they were 16, which would be 9,328,000 kilometers. They have averaged 29,000 miles or 48,000 kilometers each.

Q. 5: How far did the participants bicycle in the last twelve months?
3 of them were unable to say.
29 bicycled less than 300 miles (500 kilometers).
28 bicycled between 300 and 600 miles 500 to 1,000 kilometers).
46 bicycled between 600 and 1,200 miles (1,000 to 2,000 kilometers).
54 bicycled between 1,200 and 2,500 miles (2,000 to 4,000 kilometers).
45 bicycled between 2,500 and 5,000 miles (4,000 to 8,000 kilometers).
23 bicycled between 5,000 and 10,000 miles (8,000 to 16,000 kilometers).
2 bicycled over 10,000 miles (16,000 kilometers).

The total distance bicycled in the last 12 months was 524,000 miles or 843,000 kilometers. The average distance they each bicycled was 2,300 miles or 3,700 kilometers.

Q. 6: When asked about their average speed,
12 were unable to say.
2 averaged less than 8 mph.
22 averaged between 8 and 10 mph (13 and 16 kph).
48 averaged between 10 and 12 mph (16 and 19.5 kph).
61 averaged between 12 and 14 mph (19.5 and 22.5 kph).
50 averaged between 14 and 16 mph (22.5 and 26 kph).
26 averaged between 16 and 18 mph (26 and 29 kph).
8 averaged between 18 and 20 mph (29 and 32 kph).
2 averaged over 20 mph (32 kph).

The overall average speed was 13.3 miles per hour or 21.6 kilometers per hour. The total number of cycling hours for the year was 37,000 hours, thus the average cycling hours per person was 170 hours.

Q. 7: What kind of bike did they do most of their riding on?
63 used a touring bike.
47 used a mountain or ATB bike.
38 used a road or racing bike.
34 used a hybrid bike.
21 used a sports or sports touring.
18 used a recumbent bicycle.
5 used a bike with another internal hub.
2 used a tandem bike.
1 used a traditional one-speed bike.
1 used a three-speed bike.
1 used some other or unknown kind of bike.
None used a track or fixed gear bike.
None used a tricycle.

Please note that this is the primary bike only. Two-thirds of the cyclists visiting this web site visit the touring pages, and that plus the number of commuters helps explain the high number of touring bikes used as the primary bike. However, even with such a small sample, I think we have clear evidence that the touring bike is far from dead.

Q. 8: When asked about the travel days on their longest touring trip,
54 said that they have never been touring.
39 said that they had been day touring only.
31 said that their trip lasted a weekend or two/three days.
29 said that their trip lasted from four to seven days.
20 said that their trip lasted eight days to two weeks.
21 said that their trip lasted fifteen days to a month.
19 said that their trip lasted between a month and two months.
11 said that their trip lasted between two months and four months.
4 said that their trip lasted between four months and eight months.
2 said that their trip lasted between eight months and sixteen months.
None said that their trip lasted longer than sixteen months.

Further proof that touring is well-represented in this group of people, as nearly two-thirds have been on a touring trip lasting more than one day. Six of them have been on some very long trips.

Q. 9: Touring represented what portion of their mileage during the last 12 months?
84 said they did no touring.
64 said that less than one eighth of their mileage was touring.
33 said that less than one fourth of their mileage was touring.
24 said that less than one half of their mileage was touring.
13 said that less than three quarters of their mileage was touring.
12 said that over three fourths of their mileage was touring.
None said that all of their mileage was touring.

The total touring distance was 104,000 miles or 168,000 kilometers. The average touring distance (among those who went touring) was 448 miles or 726 kilometers.

Q. 10: The number of days the bike was used for commuting or basic transportation was
None for 41 cyclists.
50 days or less for 60 cyclists.
Between 51 and 100 days for 33 cyclists.
Between 101 and 150 days for 25 cyclists.
Between 151 and 200 days for 20 cyclists.
Between 201 and 250 days for 21 cyclists.
Between 251 and 300 days for 13 cyclists.
Over 301 days for 18 cyclists.

The total number of commuting days by all cyclists was 25,000. The average number of commuting days per commuter was 130 days.

Q. 11: What was the cyclists' average daily bike commuting/transportation distance?
35 did not use the bike for daily transportation at all.
19 averaged less than 2 miles (3 kilometers).
24 averaged between 2 and 4 miles (3 and 6.5 kilometers).
34 averaged between 4 and 8 miles (6.5 and 13 kilometers).
57 averaged betweem 8 and 15 miles (13 and 25 kilometers).
53 averaged between 15 and 30 miles (25 and 50 kilometers).
7 averaged over 30 miles (50 kilometers).

The total daily commuting distance was 2,500 miles or 4,000 kilometers which means an average daily communting distance (among the commuters) of 12 miles or 19 kilometers. Combining these with the earlier figures, we find that the total yearly commuting distance was 303,000 miles or 491,000 kilometers and average yearly commuting miles (of the commuters) was 1,500 miles or 2,500 kilometers.

Q. 12: What was the policy of the cyclists towards riding their bikes after dark?
4 never rode after dark under any circumstances.
165 rode only with both front and rear lights on the bicycle.
6 rode with only a front light and a rear reflector (no rear light).
3 depended on the reflectors that came with the bike.
2 depended on street lights and car lights without reflectors.
None felt lights were unnecessary because of riding only on sidewalks and shoulders at night.
14 tried to avoid riding at night and carried nothing for that purpose.
36 tried to avoid riding at night but did carry an emergency light.

According to John Forester, a front light and a rear, yellow SAE reflector are all that is required. In my opinion, a cyclist is much better prepared for those rare occasions when a car light does not shine on the bike by having the rear light as well. I am pleased that two-thirds of the cyclists taking this survey felt the same way. I would highly recommend to those five individuals who ride at night without lights to do so. Finally, I would suggest that those 14 who try to avoid riding at night that they get some inexpensive blinkies to carry, just to be on the safe side. Nonetheless, it is possible to get home without a light by pulling off of the road each time a motor vehicle appears. Congratulations to the 36 who carry such an emergency source of light.

Q. 13: Where did they do most of their riding during the last twelve months?
100 mainly rode on minor highways and city streets.
89 mainly used country roads and back streets.
15 mostly used designated, improved bikeways or multi-use trails.
12 mainly traveled on major highways and main arterials.
8 did most of their riding on unpaved, off-road trails.
4 mainly traveled in bike lanes.
3 mainly depended on sidewalks or sidepaths along roadway.

This was the least useful question asked, but it had to be asked, as it could have been true that most riding was being done off-road. We find that only 30 of the 231 travel mainly off road.

Q. 14: When asked about the majority of motorists,
4 thought they were reckless (disreguarding safety completely).
53 thought they were careless (intending to be safe, but not paying attention).
63 thought they were neither careless nor careful.
93 thought they were careful (paying attention, but not taking special measures).
16 thought they were very careful (going out of their way to be safe).

The largest amount agree with my opinion of drivers in this area, that they are generally careful. However, I have also lived in a town (Tuscaloosa, Alabama) where I felt that the majority of motorists were careless, due to the poor driving habits of the students at the University of Alabama.

Q. 15: Based on their own personal bicycling experiences,
25 said cycling is much safer than driving a car.
32 said cycling is somewhat safer than driving a car.
86 said cycling is about as safe as driving a car.
70 said cycling is somewhat less safe than driving a car.
16 said cycling is much less safe than driving a car.

Greatly divided opinion here.

Q. 16: When asked about their personal traffic rules,
156 said they follow the same rules as motorists but riding on shoulders or in a bike lane whenever possible.
49 said they follow the same rules as motorists, staying within the traffic lanes at all times.
16 said they generally ride in the same direction as the motor vehicles but sometimes in the opposite direction.
8 said they make up their own rules as they go and do whatever seems convenient.
2 said they ride on the sidewalk whenever possible.
None said they ride in the opposite direction from the motor vehicles.
None said they ride only on bike paths or bike lanes because roads are too dangerous.

Earlier when we asked about where they usually ride, we found that 30 rode mostly off-road. Here we find (the last two items) that no one was unwilling to ride on the roadways although two preferred the sidewalks. In my opinion, 24 of these people, those who sometimes ride in the wrong direction and those who make up their own rules, are taking unnecessary risks.

Q. 17: When asked about their attitudes towards red lights and stop signs,
130 said they always come to a complete stop at red lights but don't put a foot on the ground at stop signs.
53 said they always slow for red lights and stop signs but don't stop unless necessary.
35 said they always come to a complete stop and put one foot on the ground.
11 said they don't slow for stop signs unless necessary but do for red lights.
1 said they ignore them as much as possible.
None said they never ride on roadways.

Years ago, the rule was to always put one foot on the ground at any stop. This helps avoid the slippery slope that can result in not bothering to stop or look. Two problems argue against putting a foot down: first, it may be a long reach to the ground, and second cyclist may find it difficult to unclip from the pedal and then clip in again. So, we find cyclists who don't completely stop at stop signs outnumbering those that do by almost four to one. I consider this behavior acceptable when the cyclists use care. However, we next find that another 53 don't stop for red lights and a further 11 don't even slow down for stop signs. Finally, one person simply ignores stop signs and lights. In my opinion, these are very poor habits.

Q. 18: When asked about a real injury during the last 12 months,
209 reported that they had had no injuries of that degree.
19 reported one injury of that degree.
2 reported two injuries of that degree.
None reported three injuries of that degree.
1 reported four injuries of that degree.
None reported five injuries of that degree.
None reported six injuries of that degree.

I was very clear in defining this injury, that it must be a real injury, not just a visit to the doctor, and create problems that would require at least a few days to heal.

Based on our previously data about usage, there were 1,600 hours, 23,000 miles, 37,000 kilometers, and 9.9 years between injuries of this degree. Please note that the number of people who experienced this degree of injury were less than ten percent of the total; therefore, slight changes in their numbers had a much larger change on these figures. The two people who reported two injuries each on the next to last day of the survey caused a sudden drop in the number of years between injuries.

I did not include in these figures the individual with four injuries within one year, considering him to be an outlier (in data analysis, figures too far removed from the typical can be rejected; for instance, a millionaire living in a small town with modest incomes). At one time, he personally represented one quarter of the injuries.

Assuming these figures to be fairly accurate (remember the small numbers involved!) and assuming that these injuries are equivalent to what would be reported after an automobile injury, we find an injury is 33 times more likely to occur from riding a bike as opposed to driving a car for the same distance. If computing for trips or hours of travel, however, the difference would be less, since the average bicycle trip would be shorter as bicycles travel more slowly. And finally, the year long and lifetime exposure would be less, as the average bicycling travel provided here is only about one quarter the average motor vehicle travel (per population).

However, I do wonder if these injuries can be considered equal to motor vehicle injuries. As you can see next, many of these people were just skinned up.

Q. 19: When asked about the nature of their most serious cycling-related injury during the last 12 months,
161 said there was no accident or no injury that was a problem the next day.
53 said they experienced road rash or other significant abrasions.
4 said they experienced minor concussion resulting in nothing worse than a headache.
9 said they had a puncture wound, simple fracture, or broken bone.
2 said they had a major concussion resulting in loss of consciousness or other short-term brain injury.
2 said they had a compound or skull fracture, and/or multiple broken bones and non-permanent injuries.
None said they had a permanent injury or disability of any kind.

Note that this most-serious injury includes injuries less severe than those in question 18. Also note that I said the injury must be a problem the next day. Note that 2/3rds of the cyclists did not have any injury at all. Only 13 claimed injuries as severe as a puncture wound, broken bone, concussion, or multiple injuries. There would be 40,000 miles, 64,000 kilometers, 2,800 hours, and 17.5 years between those kinds of injuries. So even using these figures, we have to conclude that bicycling leads to a greater risk of minor injury that traveling by motor vehicle, some 19 times as great by the mile, a good bit less by the trip or hour (I don't have any good figures for the average trip length or for hours of travel by car), but with injuries still more likely on a bicycle, and over 4.5 times as dangerous by exposure. However, bicycling has health benefits that traveling by car does not.

Keep in mind that this is a very small survey, easily affected by small changes in the number of people with accidents. I will look at some other ones and see how they compare. I must admit that the results puzzle me, because I have traveled well over 100,000 miles with just six falls with three cases of skin rash and no other injuries. I know of other cyclists who have had fewer falls than me.

Q. 20: When asked the cause of this most-serious injury,
150 said they had no injury or accident that caused a problem the next day.
25 said they fell due to the road surface or an object on the road.
19 said they experienced a simple fall from their bike.
4 said they fell due to a bike problem, such as broken or loose part or jammed wheel.
4 said they collided with an automobile or station wagon.
3 said they collided with an SUV, pickup truck, van, or small RV.
2 said they swerved to avoid another collision or accident.
2 said they struck a fixed object (post, rail, tree).
2 said they struck a parked vehicle (including opened door).
2 said they collided with a person who was not riding a bicycle, such as a pedestrian, jogger, or skater.
None said they collided with any animal.
2 said they collided with another moving bicycle.
None said they collided with a motorcycle, moped, or motor scooter.
None said they collided with a large truck, a bus, or large motor home.
12 said they had some other kind of accident, not included above.

Note that the number of people not having an injury severe enough to bother them the next day has suddenly jumped by eleven. Evidently, that many people were able to ignore the fact that they didn't qualify to answer this question anyway. This is a problem with any survey discussing accidents. People are so eager to describe their accident, which was probably exciting if not traumatic, that they forget that they really didn't get hurt (outside of the immediate pain and shock of hitting the ground).

The large number of injuries with some other kind of cause indicates that my list was not very sufficient. After I posted the test, I remembered that a lot of falls are caused by clip-on pedals, so I have been wondering if that could be the missing reason. I would appreciate people writing and letting me know what their other cause of accident was.

Analysis of Subgroups

Because of the very small size of the subgroups, it must be emphasized that this information is only suggestive and lacks substance. In order for surveys like this to have much value, they have to have a great many more takers, and I would have to have some control over who takes them and who does not. Still, it's interesting to look at the numbers. Just don't take them very seriously.

Cyclists with Real Injuries

We have already used information from one subgroup already, those with real injuries, some 22 of the 231 cyclists, so let's look at what the survey shows about them. We find that they are slightly younger (39 vs. 42), more likely to come from the United Kingdom (4 in 16) or Australia (1 in 6), rode a slightly shorter distance last year but at a higher speed (14.5 vs. 13.3 mph) thus resulting in a fifth less time on the bike. They had far fewer days commuting (81 vs. 130 days) but their daily commute distance was longer (17 vs. 12 miles), and with a significantly lower yearly commuting distance (1,100 vs. 1,500 miles). Their night-time lighting was better than average, their attitudes towards the safety of cycling and their fellow motorists were typical, and their behavior at lights was better than average, although a third did not stop for red lights unless necessary. They had these injures about once per 2,000 miles (although 10 of the 22 injuries were road rash), which is very similar to the distance I ride between some motorist making some fool mistake, but only four of their injuries involved motor vehicles (one of which was not moving) and at least 12 involved falls without hitting anything. The basic feature that sticks out (and remember that this is a very small group to be making any generalizations about) is that they are faster and longer distance riders, who commute less but travel longer distances when they do.


There were 29 Canadians, with women more common than in the survey as a whole. The Canadians were the same average age but have traveled farther during their lifetimes (47,000 vs. 29,000 miles) and farther for the year (2,800 vs. 2,300 miles). Average speed and average hours per year were somewhat higher. Only one had never been touring compared with nearly a quarter for the survey as a whole. In the whole survey, over a third had not been touring this year, but only a tenth of the Canadians said the same. The average touring distance was over 50% longer too (735 vs. 448 miles). The number of commuting days and the miles per day were both somewhat longer, yielding more commuting miles (2,400 vs. 1,500 miles). Night riding policy was better than average, and Canadians were more likely to stop at a stop sign and red light (4/5 vs. 3/4ths). The Canadians reported only one injury, giving them 29 years, 5,400 hours, and 81,000 miles between injuries.

Cyclists from the UK

There was a total of 16 from the United Kingdom, including one woman. The average age was lower (38 vs. 42). The average lifetime distance was longer (62,000 vs. 48,000 kilometers) but the average distance this last year was less (3,300 vs. 3,700 kilometers). Touring distance, however, was significantly larger (1,070 vs. 730 kilometers). There were more commuting days (148 vs. 130) and a longer commuting distance (28 vs. 19 kilometers), leading to a greater yearly commuting distance per commuter (3,000 vs. 2,500 kilometers). There was an excellent night policy, with everyone riding at night using lights front and rear and with those who might get caught carrying an emergency light. Only one person did not ride with the traffic, and only two did not stop for red lights. Nonetheless, four cyclists from the UK reported a real injury, giving this group just 11,500 kilometers and 3.5 years between injuries. This group included two collisions with motor vehicles (high) but only two cases with anything worse than road rash. Please remember that statistics from such a small group can't be considered very valid, especially the injury information which is based on four people.

Cyclists from Down Under

There were six cyclists from Australia and three from New Zealand. Five were men, and four were women. This makes a very small group to say anything at all about. Still, it's interesting to say something, but let's be clear that we are talking about only nine people. Their average age was 36. The lifetime distance bicycled was average, but the distance in the last twelve months was high, about 3,500 miles or 5,600 kilometers (I don't know which is used more in Australia). Touring was down, and so was the daily commute distance, but there were 50% more commuting days, so commutes were up. Good light practice in riding at night, and good lane behavior, with one exception, but three (1/3) don't stop for red lights. There was one accident among the nine.

Cyclists from Europe

There were twelve cyclists in this group, all male, eleven from Europe and one from an unknown area, and the average age was 36. Again, this number is much too small to tell us about Europe, although it tells us about the people who took this survey. Their lifetime distance of 58,000 kilometers was somewhat higher than average. Their 5,600 kilometers of cycling in the last 12 months was 50% above average, as was their cycling hours. Touring was somewhat less, commuting miles were about 75%, but commuting days were much higher, resulting in nearly 50% greater commuting miles. The night light policy was good, but half have irregular traffic behavior and poor intersection behavior. There was one injury from this group, about average.

Cyclists from the United States

There were 164 cyclists from the US, more than 2/3ths of the total, with 14 women among the total. The large number of US cyclists tends to make the US figures the average figures. However, the lifetime distance was 25,000 miles compared with the 29,000 average. The year distance and average speed were a little lower. Over a quarter used a touring bike as the primary bike. Touring distance during the last 12 months was somewhat lower, as were days commuting, and total commuting distance. Night behavior was mostly good, lane behavior was pretty good, but nearly a third ran traffic lights. Fifteen of the cyclists having accidents were from this group.

Women Cyclists

There were 23 women cyclists, with an average age of 36, all except two from the US, Canada, and Australia. The average lifetime distance was a low 17,000 miles, but the distance cycled in in last 12 months was 2,500 miles, above average. Average speed was slightly higher than average and touring distance in the last 12 months about a third greater. Commuting days, distance per day, and total distance were somewhat lower. Night policy and lane policy were usually good, but a third ran red lights. Three had injuries; thus women averaged 7.7 years between accidents.

Younger vs. Older Cyclists

For better contrast, I'll talk about the younger and older cyclists side by side. Since this is a fairly balanced group, the results are more meaningful; still we have to remember than 231 cyclists is still a small group to try to represent the whole cycling population. The younger cyclists, those under 44, averaged 33 years old. There were 113 males and 19 females. The older cyclists, 45 and older, averaged 54 years of age, and were 95 males and 4 females. The younger cyclists have traveled 21,000 miles each during their lifetimes and the older cyclists 40,000. This year, the younger cyclists cranked out 2,100 miles, and the older cyclists 2,500. Average speed of the younger cyclists was 13.8, and the hours averaged 148. Average speed of the older cyclists was 12.7, and the hours averaged 198. Among the older cyclists, a touring bike was twice as popular as any other kind, while among the younger cyclists, the mountain bike was somewhat more common. The longest lifetime tour is difficult to compare, but there's no question that the older cyclists have been touring more and on longer tours. The younger cyclists have averaged 330 miles of touring during the last year, and the older 600 miles. With commuting, the older cyclists had a slightly greater daily distance and a somewhat greater number of commuting days, resulting in 1,650 miles for older cyclists and 1,470 for younger. Although riding policies are very similar, older cyclists had a much lower accident rate, with 19.3 years between accidents as opposed to the younger cyclists' 7.3 years. Injuries were less severe as well.

High Life Mileage and Low Life Mileage Cyclists Compared

To some extent, older cyclists will have a higher lifetime mileage, but this "ain't necessarily so." The cyclists with a high lifetime mileage averaged 46, and the cyclists with a low average mileage averaged 40. There were 58 males and 4 females in the high mileage group, so they are somewhat less than a quarter of the total. The high mileage group constitutes only cyclists who have traveled over 25,000 miles in their lifetime, and they averaged 78,000 miles. The low mileage group consists of cyclists who have traveled less than 25,000 during their lifetimes, and they averaged 8,900 miles. During the last year, the low mileage group averaged 1,600 miles, and the high mileage group 4,300, over three times as much. The low mileage cyclists averaged 12.8 miles per hour and 121 hours of cycling in the last year. The high mileage cyclists averaged 14.6 mph and 300 hours of cycling. Both groups have good results for longest touring trips, although a higher proportion of the high mileage group has been touring and has been on long tours. The high mileage group had over twice the touring distance during the last year. The daily commuting distance by the high life group was only two miles greater, but they commuted an average of 183 days as opposed to the 108 days of the low mileage group, so their commuting distance was 2,500 miles vs. 1,100 miles. The high mileage group was more likely to use country roads and back streets. The high mileage group had similar behavior at night, at intersections, and with lane use. They traveled twice as far between accidents as the low mileage group, but due to their higher yearly travel, averaged only 7.8 years between injuries as opposed to 11.1 years for the low mileage group.

Cyclists Who Don't Stop

This final group is of cyclists who indicated that they didn't stop for red lights and stop signs. There were 58 males and 8 females, and the average age was 41. Their lifetime distance and distance during the last year were somewhat above average while their speed was average. Few characteristics stand out except one: these cyclists averaged just 6.6 years between injury and included two of the three cyclists who reported more than one injury (remember that the cyclist who reported four injuries was not included in the injury calculation above).

My analysis is now concluded. At some time in the future, I may run a similar survey or look at these figures again. Although this survey can not be considered valid for the entire population of cyclists, it is suggestive, and I have learned from it. Thanks to all who participated!


Institute for Traffic Safety Analysis  Riley Geary's statistics page, with both his analysis and links to other sites.

Postings and reviews of bicycle-related research studies  John S. Allen's statistics page, including original research, links to other sites, and his analysis of some of the studies.

The Library at Bicycling Life  This includes some additional studies.

Comments | SECTIONS: | The New World | Writing | Thoreau | Home | Bike Pages |
DIRECTORIES: | Lifestyle | Commuting | Touring | Health | Advocacy | Traffic | Skills | Humor | Survey | Links |
IN SURVEY: | Safety | Politics | Touring | Health | Commuter |
http://www.kenkifer.com/bikepages/survey/sept01.htm | Copyright © 2001 Ken Kifer | October 8, 2001