Sharing the Roadway: Bicyclist Accident Statistics

Riding a bicycle is an environmentally-friendly and physically beneficial alternative to driving a car. Sharing roadways comes with a fair share of potential hazards, especially considering the increased likelihood of accidents that result in injury or death. Over 800 bike riders in the United States were killed in 2015 as a result of crashing into a motor vehicle. The injury total for the same year was approximately 45,000 individuals, and these accidents have the potential to cause permanent disabilities.

Fast Statistics From National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
• Less than 800 deaths resulted from bicyclist/motor vehicle crashes in 2006
• More than 800 deaths resulted from bicyclist/motor vehicle crashes in 2015
• Fatality rates have increased 6% from 2006 to 2015
• Approximately 44,000 individuals were injured in a bicycle accident in 2006
• Approximately 45,000 individuals were injured in a bicycle accident in 2015
• Injury rates have increased 2.3% from 2006 to 2015

• The National Safety Council reports that injuries and death resulting from bicyclist accidents result in a total cost over $4 billion each year

Trends in Bicycle Accident Victims
The NHTSA has gather statistics of bicycle accident victims according to their location, gender, and age among other noteworthy facts.
• Bicyclist fatalities have increased in age starting with the average victim being 24 in 1988, and gradually increasing to 45 in 2014
• Only 12% of reported victims were female, leaving the vast majority of deaths to males
• More than 70% of bicycle accident deaths happened in urban areas
• 1/5 of the fatalities occured between the hours of 6:00 and 9:00 p.m.
• Only 19% of bicyclists killed had more than .08 g/dL blood alcohol level
• The amount increases to 35% when the motor vehicle drivers are added to the total
• The states with the most fatalities are Texas (50), Florida (139), and California (128)
• Vermont and Rhode Island were the only states that did not report any fatalities in 2014

Bicycle Accident Statistics Provided by the Center for Disease Control
Concerns regarding the rates of bicycle accidents include the physical consequences, in addition to medical expenses and productivity losses. Data collected in 2010 showed evidence of more than $10 billion in expenses resulting from the victims with lifetime medical costs and lost productivity. With more than 450,000 bicycle incidents in 2015, these expenses continue to grow with each passing year.

Who Has the Greatest Risk?
• Adult males between the ages of 50 and 59 have the highest risk of death
• Young people ranging from age 5 to 19 are at the greatest risk of injury
• The majority of accidents occur in locations that are not an intersection, but are considered urban areas.
• 37% of reported accidents include a driver or bicyclist under the influence of alcohol