Bicyclists account for roughly two percent of all traffic fatalities throughout the United States in any given year. With more people relying on this form of transportation in order to get to work or school, bicycle safety should be a concern for every urban area in the US. Some states have stringent bike safety laws and vast networks of bike trails, while other states are lagging behind in their laws protecting bike riders from motor vehicle drivers. The differences among the states is staggering, and more bike trails need to be created in order to provide safety for all bike riders on the road today.
In Kentucky, bicyclists must follow the same rules of the road as people who are operating motor vehicles. With the lack of bike trail networking in Kentucky, this becomes more important than ever because bicyclists are sharing the road with motor vehicles more often. Some cities are developing a more bike friendly plan, while others are way behind when it comes to bike safety. Bicycle safety precautions are a bit lacking in Kentucky, as only riders under the age of sixteen are required to wear protective gear. The lack of helmet wearing results in a number of fatalities each year.
National Bike Injury and Accident Statistics
- 48,000 people were hurt in bicycle accidents with a motor vehicle in 2011 in the United States.
- During that year, 677 of those bicyclists died because of the injuries they sustained with a motor vehicle.
- The highest fatality year between 2002 and 2011 was 2005, where 786 bike riders died on the streets because of an accident with a motor vehicle.
- 2.1% of the people killed in 2011 where people riding bikes that were hit by a motor vehicle.
- Urban area accidents accounted for 69% of the total fatalities in 2011.
- The evening hours saw the most fatalities, with cyclists getting killed 30% of the time between 4-8 pm at night.
- The average age for all bike riders killed in the United States in 2011 was 43.
- The average age for people killed in all types of accidents with motor vehicles was 32 years old.
- At least 2% of fatalities in the United States are due to bicyclist and motor vehicle accidents.
Kentucky Bike Accident and Injury Statistics
- In 2013, there was a total number of 638 road fatalities in Kentucky.
- Of these 638 fatalities, 3 of those people killed were riding a bike at the time.
- Kentucky has a low fatality rate per million of residents, as compared to Florida which has one of the highest.
- Alcohol was involved in 37% of the fatalities on the road in 2013.
- In Kentucky, drivers must give bicyclists at least three feet of clearance for safety.
- 87% of the bicyclists killed while in an accident with a motor vehicle were male.
- 83% of the total people injured in an accident with a motor vehicle were male.
- The most popular time period for bike and car accidents to occur is between 6 and 9 pm.
- The weekends see the most accidents between bicyclists and motor vehicles.
Other National Bike Statistics
- Cyclists between the age of 45 and 54 are the group that sustains the highest amount of fatalities when injured.
- 24% of the cyclists killed in 2013 had a blood alcohol content of .01 or higher.
- 20% had blood alcohol content that measured .08 or higher.
- The bikers that sustain the highest rate of injuries are male bicyclists age 20-24.
- In 2013, the per capita rate for fatalities amongst bike riders was seven times higher for men than for women.