A report released by the Chicago Department of Transportation has revealed some important trends, both good and bad, in Chicago’s cycling community.
Between 2000 and 2010, bike commuting in Chicago increased threefold. 1.3 percent of the city’s daily commuters ride bikes, some 15,000 people daily. Chicago ranks second, behind only Philadelphia, in share of bike commuters.
9,000 bike injuries were reported between 2005 and 2010. Of these, 55 percent occurred in intersections. Some of the most common locations for accidents include Damen and Fullterton, Halsted and Fullerton, Lincoln and Clark, and the Damen/Milwaukee/North intersection.
There is a lot more data in the report’s 68 pages, but some highlights include –
- 40 percent of bike injury crashes were a result of drivers failing to yield the right of way.
- Of the 29 fatal crashes with helmet use information available, only 1 was wearing a helmet.
- Passenger cars account for the overwhelming number of vehicles involved in crashes. City buses were involved in only 1.6 percent of bike crashes. Taxies were involved in 8.4 percent.
- 25 percent of bike accidents were hit and runs by the motorist. This is less than the 36.5 percent of vehicle-pedestrian accidents in Illinois.
- Men account for 69 percent of miles cycled and 75 percent of crashes.
Heatmap of where bike accidents occur.
Crashes by intersection.
Not surprisingly, summer hosts the most accidents.
The full CDOT report is well worth the read (or at least a skim) for Chicago cyclists and anyone interested in the city’s ongoing bike developments. It is available here.