From CTC newsnet
Cycle facilities encourage cycling but don’t improve safety
Three Danish researchers have published what is probably the largest ever study of the safety impacts of cycle facilities. Based on analysis of 8500 cyclist collisions, 1500 traffic counts and 1000 interviews, the researchers found that cycle facilities do indeed encourage more people to cycle and make cyclists feel safer; yet the reality is that they actually reduce cyclists’ safety, with improvements in cyclists’ safety between junctions being outweighed by increased risk at or near junctions. Read the executive summary (the full report is in Danish). The researchers conclude that well-designed cycle facilities do have their place (after all, the health benefits of the extra cycling will far outweigh the increased injury risk which, in the wider scheme of things, is still pretty low). However, nobody should assume that it is necessarily safer for cyclists to use them – if anything, this research rather suggests the opposite. If only this report had come out 6 months earlier, it might have made it a whole lot easier to win our Highway Code campaign!