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Startling statistics surrounding bicycle accidents

On Behalf of | Dec 13, 2023 | Injuries

Bicycling remains a popular activity. Countless riders take to the streets nationwide to enjoy the great outdoors while getting a bit of exercise as well.

Troubling trends

Many enthusiasts are literally putting their lives in their own hands. Recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reveals that 871 cyclists died in 2018, a significant forty-percent increase from 623 in 2010. The following year (2019) saw a nearly three percent reduction, with a slight rise in 2020 (675) during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Somewhat surprisingly, a large majority of these horrific accidents do not involve other vehicles. Bicyclists are more likely to fall or hit an unmovable obstacle. Twenty-five percent of fatalities in 2020 were the result of hit-and-run accidents between the hours of 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm.

Older bicyclists at risk

The highest number of fatalities occurred for bicyclists aged 50 to 59, totaling 101. Out of that number, only eight were women. Older riders 60 to 64 accounted for 90 fatalities. Those 50 to 54 accounted for 82. Eighty deaths were in the 65 to 69 demographic. Combining all the demographics, 353 cyclists died, making up 41 percent of the overall total.

Some good news shows male 19 and under bicyclist deaths declining steadily from 638 in 1975 to 67 in 2019, accounting for only eight percent of the total fatalities. However, with age may not come wisdom as males 20 and older grew from 180 to 652 or 70 percent.

Females 20 and younger have also fallen, specifically from 148 in 1975 to 12 in 2019, representing only one percent. Those in the next older demographic in the same year resulted in three percent or 32 deaths. Overall, the demographic accounted for 13 percent or 107 fatalities.

Dangerous urban terrain

Finally, the demos are common when looking at overall urban versus rural areas. Urban bicyclists increased by nearly 50 percent from 2010 to 2019, with rural residents growing by 4.6 percent.

A motor vehicle versus a pedal-powered transport involved in a collision usually has a single outcome. More serious and potentially fatal injuries for bicyclists, particularly those in more populated urban areas.

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