For current information on our ongoing advocacy efforts, please reference our facebook feed.
You’ve crashed…now what?
Bike crashes and other accidents are a fact of cycling. But do you know what to do if you’re in an accident? If you feel fine is an ambulance trip to the ER necessary? Will the police automatically file a report on what happened? Is it worthwhile to find witnesses or take pictures…will they help for insurance claims?
Ms. Nako Nakatsuka learned the hard way about these and other issues when she got rammed on her bike from behind. She shares her experiences and hard-earned knowledge on her advocacy site. Bottom line is that while cycling can be a safe and enjoyable means of transportation, you need to be prepared with the knowledge of what to do if you or your cycling friends have an accident.
Bike Safety: An Update
Note: a more detailed version of the following article can be found on page 3 of the November 2017 issue of Tumbleweird. an independent alternative newspaper for the Tri-Cities.
Readers of both the Wall Street Journal and the BTC webpage may have noticed an interesting article on bike safety in the October 11th, 2017 issue of the WSJ. Unfortunately, you have to be a WSJ subscriber to get the full electronic version of article. But you can at least read the first paragraph here. A summary paragraph reads as follows:
“In a paper issued last summer, the Governors Highway Safety Association said bike-related deaths on U.S. streets and highways rose 12.2% in 2015 from the previous year, based on data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Bike fatalities rose by 1.3% in 2016. “
The article notes that doctors are treating far more injuries, including traumatic ones, related to cycling, and that cities need to do more to make cyclists and pedestrians safe.
Similar, although slightly outdated, information that’s fully available to all readers can be found at the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center
This material includes discussions and possible explanations for the 6 percent increase in bicyclist fatalities between 2006 and 2015, and a staggering 12.2 percent between 2014 and 2015. They also note that nearly a third of all injuries are caused when bicyclists are struck by cars.
We bring these articles to the attention of BTC supporters not to discourage anyone from riding, but to emphasize the need for jurisdictions to take cycling into account within their transportation management plans. Fewer bikes means more cars, which only adds to the congestion and health problems we’re seeing across the nation. Bikes are a standard mode of transportation in many cities and should be so in our community.
Hopefully the statistics given in the links above will encourage city planners to provide for safe alternatives to Tri-City cyclists who now too few roads with clearly marked bike lanes, have to negotiate dangerous roundabouts and are forced to ride within the ‘door zone’ of busy urban corridors.
Bike Buzz Reports
Below are links describing bike advocacy in our neighboring communities, a novel use of storage containers, the latest word on League of American Bicycle Friendly Communities and a nice essay by a city council member describing how Ellensburg worked to receive its BFC certification.
Yakima Walks and Bikes
Cleveland Ohio Bike Boxes
Bike League BFC
Blog post about how Ellensburg decided to apply for BFC
Share the Road Signs
“Share the Road” signs have been found to have virtually no effect on the mentality of motorists. A better alternative which was found to get their attention was a sign with the words “Bicycles May Use Full Lane”. A summary of this interesting study can be found on page 74 of the February 2016 issue of Scientific American. And the research article on which this SciAm summary is based appeared in the August 28 2015 issue of PLOS (The Public Library of Science).