Where Do Most Bicycle Accidents Occur?

This guide will answer the question, “Where do most bicycle accidents occur?“, and will look at what can cause a cyclist accident.

We’ll look at specific locations in which accidents can happen, looking in particular at fatal accidents.

We also look at the times in the day when cycling accidents are more likely to happen and contrast the safety of urban and rural roads.

Where Do Most Bicycle Accidents Occur?

According to government-reported road accident casualties, in Great Britain, between 2015 – 2020, 19% of all pedal cycle accidents took place on rural roads, and 81% of all cycling-related casualties took place on urban roads.

where do most bicycle accidents occur

There are also points on the road where accidents are more likely to happen. The most frequent places for a collision involving a pedal bike include:

  • 10.3% – crossroads
  • 38.1% – Y, T or staggered junctions
  • 1.1% – junctions with more than 4 arms
  • 3.7% – other types of junction
  • 11.8% – roundabouts
  • 2.2% – mini roundabouts
  • 0.6% – slip roads
  • 3.7% – private drives or entranceways
  • 27.7% – not within 20 metres of a junction
  • 0.8% – unknown

As you can see, roundabouts are potentially dangerous for cyclists. But more so, junctions are by far the more dangerous, particularly Y, T and staggered junctions. Crossroads are similar to junctions too.

So adding all of these variations together, over 50% of all cycling accidents occur at some form of junction.

Where Do Most Fatal Cycling Accidents Occur?

You may wonder how common fatal bicycle accidents are. On average, from 2015 -2020, 2 cyclists per week were killed in Great Britain.

Moreover, government statistics show that the type of road can be a contributory factor to where fatal cycling accidents occur. 56% of fatal bicycle accidents happened on rural roads, no doubt down to the higher speed limits, blind bends and narrow lanes.

44% of fatal bicycle accidents took place on urban roads. Despite the lower figure, cyclists are more likely to suffer a less serious injury on urban roads compared to rural ones.

You may wonder where about on roads most fatal collisions happen. The reported road casualties for 2015 – 2020 also explain that junctions remain a danger for cyclists. These are the most common road locations for a fatal collision involving a pedal bike:

  • 9.5% – crossroads
  • 21.6% – Y, T or staggered junction
  • 1.1% – junction with more than 4 arms
  • 2.3% – other junction
  • 4.5% – roundabout
  • 0.3% – mini-roundabout
  • 0.9% – slip road
  • 1.1% – private drive or entrance way
  • 58.6% – not within 20 metres of a junction
  • 0.0% – unknown

Rural Vs Urban Cycling Safety

When considering answers to the question, “Where do most bicycle accidents occur?” we know from the statistics that fatal cycling accidents are more likely to occur on rural roads.

But as mentioned above, the chance of suffering injuries on busy urban roads is higher. Indeed when we look at the total number of casualties, most bike accidents do occur on urban roads. However, a cyclist is more likely to suffer a fatal accident on a rural road.

Sharp bends and higher speed limits can be hazardous when riding a bike in the countryside. Roads may be too narrow for a driver to safely overtake a cyclist, which could cause a collision. Here are some tips for riding safely on the roads.

  • Pull in at a safe place so oncoming traffic can overtake you when riding two abreast.
  • Don’t ride in the gutter. Ride in a visible road position, and only pull in so cars can overtake you when it is safe to do so.
  • You may also need bike lights during the day if your route involves travelling through tunnels or under low-hanging trees.
  • Wear a helmet to protect your head and bright clothing so drivers can see you.

When Do Most Cycling Accidents Occur?

Government road traffic accident statistics show that from 2015 – 2020, there are times during weekdays and weekends when cycling accidents are more likely to take place.

  • During the week, the peak times for pedal cyclists to be killed or seriously injured is 7 am to 10 am and 4 pm to 7 pm.
  • At weekends, the peak time for pedal cyclists to be killed or seriously injured is between 10 am and 12 noon.

Weather conditions can also be a contributing factor to how likely a road accident is to occur. Wet or icy weather can make the surface of the roads slippery, making it harder for a rider or driver to stay in control. Poor weather conditions may also reduce visibility, making it harder for drivers to see cyclists.

A report published by NHS Bristol found that wet or icy roads were a significant contributing factor to many hospital admissions from road traffic accidents.

Please contact us today for more information about road safety advice or information about claiming compensation for cycling injuries.

We appreciate you reading our guide on where most bicycle accidents occur. If you’d like to learn more, please see our guides below:

Why Bicycles Are Better Than Cars

In this guide, we will cover why bicycles are better than cars (in our opinion). For many people, riding a bike is an exciting way to travel, with enormous benefits to your health and the environment. Let’s consider why we believe using a bicycle is better than using a car.

Why Bicycles Are Better Than Cars

Some of the advantages of using bicycles include the following:

  • Riding a bike is more economical than driving a car or public transport. With petrol prices increasing by huge amounts, cycling offers a less costly alternative.
  • Pedal bikes have zero emissions, so they don’t contribute to your carbon footprint.
  • Cycling has great health benefits. For example, riding a bicycle is great cardiovascular exercise and can lift your mood.

Why Bikes Are Better For The Environment

In 2014 newly registered cars gave off, on average, 124 grams of CO2 per km travelled. Bicycles do not produce CO2, so cycling is significantly better for the environment.

why bicycles are better than cars

More people switching from driving motor vehicles to riding a bicycle also helps to reduce noise pollution. Reducing noise pollution is better for local wildlife and reduces stress amongst residents. It can also reduce the risk levels of people developing respiratory problems, like asthma.

Cycling Is Cheaper Than Driving

Another reason bicycles are better than cars is because they’re cheaper than driving. At the time of writing, there is currently a cost of living crisis affecting much of the world.

Indeed, rising fuel costs, spurred on by the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and Russia’s isolated position on the world stage, is causing stress for many households and businesses. In 2022, petrol prices reached record highs of £2 per litre, making driving a car less affordable for many.

Riding a bike does take some prior investment. You will need to buy a safe, roadworthy bicycle, a helmet, bike lights and suitable clothing. The Cycle To Work Scheme can help fund your bicycle and necessary equipment, but your employer has to sign up for it and not all do.

You will also need to pay for maintaining the bike and may wish to pay for cycle safety training. However, riding a bike is still significantly cheaper than buying and running a car. Research by the Cycle To Work Scheme suggests that riding a bike to work can save you up to £3,000 a year.

Cycling Is Healthier For You

Government research for 2017/18 found that 25% of people in England aged 16 or over were physically inactive. This means they did less than 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each week.

Bikes are better than cars because cycling regularly is a great way to introduce cardiovascular exercise into your daily life. Moreover, cycling is a low-impact form of exercise, which puts less strain on your joints than higher-impact exercises like running.

Regular exercise can reduce the likelihood of suffering a stroke, heart disease or type 2 diabetes. In addition, regular exercise can help lift your mood.

The government recommends that adults aim for at least 150 minutes of aerobic exercise a week or other combinations. Please see these NHS guidelines for physical activity to learn more.

Why Bicycles Are Better Than Cars – It’s More Fun Than Driving!

Many people think bicycles are the best transportation type because it is more fun than driving. Being stuck in a traffic jam or being on a delayed train can be a part of our daily lives that we would all rather do without.

Instead, cycling can boost endorphins and be a highly enjoyable experience, all the while you can weave in and out of static traffic.

Moreover, cycling can be a social activity you can do with your friends and family. Indeed, if you have children, they may enjoy learning how to ride a bike and gain more confidence from cycling.

So cycling can boost your health and mood and help save you money. Moreover, riding a bike is better for the environment, and you may find it a more enjoyable experience. So this is why bicycles are better than cars, in our opinion.

To learn more about cycling, please contact us.

You can also click here to learn more about how to avoid cycling accidents.

Learn how to avoid cycling accidents here 

And discover where most cycling accidents occur here.

How To Avoid Cycling Accidents

This guide will explain how to avoid cycling accidents when out and about on the road.

Below, we’ll take a look at the most common causes of bicycle accidents, examples of hazards for cyclists, and tips on how to stay safe.

how to avoid cycling accidents

Cycling is a great way to travel. It keeps you fit and is also great for the environment. However, cyclists need to bear in mind that they are less protected on the road than car occupants and similar road users.

Drivers are responsible for travelling safely on the roads to protect vulnerable road users. But cyclists also need to learn how to avoid bike accidents.

What Are The Most Common Causes Of Bicycle Accidents?

These are the most common causes of cycling accidents in Great Britain, from 2015 – 2020, where the cyclists were tragically killed or suffered serious injury:

  • The driver or rider failed to make the correct observations – 3,782 incidents
  • The driver or rider did not judge the other person’s path or speed correctly – 1,644 incidents
  • Careless, reckless or hurried driving or riding – 1,253 incidents
  • The cyclist entered a road from the pavement – 1,092 incidents
  • The driver or rider makes a poor turn or manoeuvre – 798 incidents
  • Rider wearing dark clothing – 588 incidents
  • The rider or driver loses control of their vehicle – 586 incidents
  • Travelling too fast for conditions – 389 incidents
  • The rider does not display lights at night or in poor visibility – 367 incidents
  • Driver or rider impaired by alcohol – 313 incidents

These statistics are taken from the government’s reported road casualties. It’s by no means an exhaustive list but gives you an idea of the causes so that you know how to avoid cycling accidents.

What Are Some Common Cycling Hazards?

All drivers and riders should know how to avoid cycling accidents. However, drivers still pose a danger to cyclists on the road because pedal cycles don’t have any outer shell to protect the rider. So drivers need to take extra care around cyclists.

Likewise, local authorities should maintain highways to a safe standard. Here are some common cycling hazards:

  • Drivers not making the correct observations before they turn or manoeuvre
  • Dooring accidents, where a car occupant opens their door into the path of a rider
  • Potholes in the road, which can flip a bike up.
  • Wet and icy weather
  • Drivers or riders not making the correct observations at junctions

How To Avoid Cycling Accidents

You may wonder how cyclists avoid accidents on the roads. Anyone who rides a bike can take the following precautions to avoid bike accidents.

How To Avoid Bicycle Accidents

Here are some top tips on how to avoid bicycle accidents:

  • Wear a helmet to avoid head injuries and if you are involved in a collision or fall off your bike.
  • Wear suitable clothing, such as a high visibility jacket so that drivers can see you at night.
  • Cycle 0.5 metres from the kerb, or stay central when riding on a narrow country road and only pull over for cars to pass you when it is safe.
  • Make your intentions clear by giving hand signals and try to make eye contact with drivers at junctions.
  • Consider getting some cycle safety training, even if you are an experienced rider.
  • Watch out for hazards on the road, such as potholes, which can make your bike flip up.

Follow The Hierarchy Of Road Users

In 2020, The Highway Code was updated to introduce the hierarchy of road users. The principle of the hierarchy of road users is that less vulnerable road users are supposed to look out for more vulnerable road users.

So, car drivers would be responsible for taking extra care around cyclists. Likewise, cyclists must give pedestrians space and show them consideration when they cross the road.

Contrary to popular opinion, the hierarchy of road users does not mean that more vulnerable road users like cyclists or pedestrians are not responsible for making sensible judgements to keep themselves and others safe.

Indeed the Road Traffic Act 1988 states that all road users owe one another a duty of care. Therefore drivers and riders are responsible for driving or riding safely and maintaining their vehicles to a safe standard.

Thank you for reading our guide on how to avoid cycling accidents. To learn more about cycling accident claims, head here. And if you have any questions, please contact us.

You can also read our other guides below: