ROAD SAFETY – CYCLING

From 2012/13 to 2016/2017 injuries from cycling were one of the most common cause of hospitalizations among ages 0-14 years 1

OVERVIEW

Cycling is a popular activity for Canadians of all ages, and is used for recreation, for exercise, and as a means of transportation.

Cyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicle drivers. However, cyclists, like pedestrians, are vulnerable to significant injuries or death in crashes with larger motorized vehicles. These injuries can be more severe when motor vehicle drivers hit children. The top contributing factors attributed to crashes with cyclists are driver distraction and failure to yield.

On average, nearly 4 out of 5 crashes involving cyclists occur at intersections in BC 2

PREVENTION

  • Wear an approved bicycle helmet: A helmet should meet safety standards and fit properly: the helmet should sit level on your head (not tilted back) with the front edge one inch or less above your eyebrows, and should fit snugly so that it can’t roll off of your head.
  • Check your gear: Make sure the brakes on your bicycle are adjusted properly, with the brake pads and cables in good condition.
  • Make sure they see you: In order to make yourself visible in bad weather or poor light conditions, wear reflective gear and keep a headlight on the front and back of your cycle.
  • Follow the rules of the road: Remember to obey all traffic signs and signals. Stay on the right side of the road, and cycle in the same direction as traffic flow. This makes you more visible to drivers, and they will be able to see your hand signals. Use designated bike lanes whenever possible. Use hand signals and shoulder check before making any turns.
  • Be a good example: When biking with children or inexperienced cyclists, have them follow your lead and bike in single file.
  • Stay alert: Be aware of people in parked vehicles as well as taxis to avoid getting hit by an opening door.

News

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1. Data Source: Discharge Abstract Database (DAD), Ministry of Health, BCIRPU Injury Data Online Tool, 2018. 2012/13 to 2016/17

2. ICBC. Sharing the Road with Others: Cycling Safety. Available from https://www.icbc.com/road-safety/sharing/Pages/cycling-safety.aspx