<img src=”/?q=system/files/images/bikeAccidentTrackerMap.jpg” align=right width=250 alt=”bike tracker 2.0 map/>Online news service, the Bay Citizen, has released its Bike Accident Tracker 2.0, which includes a wealth of data on bike crashes in the East Bay (and the entire Bay Area), and also allows you to report your own crashes.
The Bay Citizen reports that from 2005 through 2009, there were 3,404 bike crashes in Alameda County, the East Bay’s more urban County, and that during the same time period, there were 1,416 crashes in Contra Costa County, where long roads run through quiet suburbs and countryside. Which is more dangerous for bikers? The answer, perhaps surprisingly, is Contra Costa County.
The reason is that Contra Costa County has far fewer cyclists than Alameda. An average of 11 percent of Contra Costa bike commuters were in crashes each year from 2005 through 2009, while only 6.83% of Alameda County bike commuters were in crashes during the same time period. The Bay Citizen is quick to note that their bicycle usage data is the 2010 Census and its related American Commute Survey data, which is far from accurate and omits most bike trips. However, one can comfortably conclude that Contra Costa bike crash rates are too high, given their high number of crashes relative to population and estimated bicycling rates.
Either way, bicycling is still a safe way to get around Contra Costa County and for those wanting to improve their confidence and comfort level on the road, sign up for an EBBC bicycle safety class. The San Leandro Patch unfortunately suggest that wearing a helmet is the only thing one needs to do to protect against a collision. Actually, riding in a ‘visible’ manner so that motorist can see you as a cyclists, riding ‘predictably’ as if you were driving a car so that motorist know what to expect, and using a bicycle that is in good working order and which you are comfortable riding, are the three most important things a cyclists can do to ensure a safe and enjoyable journey.
The East Bay Bicycle Coalition is continuing to study the data, and compare it to the American Commute Survey data release last year for 2005-2009.File attachment: bayCitizenLogo.jpg bikeAccidentTrackerMap.jpg