Crash Analysis

Deciding on a set of treatments that will provide the greatest safety and mobility benefits for bicyclists requires transportation and land-use planners, engineers, law enforcement officials, and community leaders to engage in problem-solving. In most cases, a two-pronged approach is required. The first prong involves an examination of the bicycling crash problem through a review of historical crash data. Two specific types of crash analyses that are detailed in this chapter include:

However, many of the problems faced by bicyclists either do not involve crashes or the crashes are not reported. Thus, the second prong is more broad-based and focuses on performance objectives that will lead to changes in behavior that, in turn, will result in a safer and more accessible environment for bicyclists. The types of objectives often pursued by local agencies are also discussed in this section.

Identification of High-Crash Locations
A first step in the problem-solving process of improving bicycle safety and mobility is to identify locations or areas where bicycle crash problems exist and where engineering, education, and enforcement measures will be most beneficial.
Bicycle Crash Typing
The development of effective roadway design and operation, education, and enforcement measures to accommodate bicyclists and prevent crashes is hindered by insufficient detail in computerized State and local crash files.
Definitions of Bicycle Crash Types
The following section provides definitions of the 14 crash groups included in the BIKESAFE application. Also provided are examples of a few possible causes and problems for each crash type and some of the countermeasures within BIKESAFE that may be applicable.
Crash-Related Countermeasures
A total of 50 different bicyclist countermeasures are presented in the Countermeasures section of this application. To assist engineers and planners who may want further guidance on which measures are appropriate to address certain types of bicycle crashes, an interactive matrix is provided.
Program of Improvements
Some bicycle crashes are associated with deficient roadway designs. Bicyclists and motorists often contribute to crashes through a disregard or lack of understanding of laws and safe driving or riding behavior.

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