LaHood Reminds Drivers: Bicyclists Share the Road

As more people take to the roads on their bikes, U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood asked both drivers and cyclists to help reduce the number of cyclist fatalities. In 2007, according to LaHood, 698 cyclists were killed in America.

Whether riding for fun, exercise, or to save on gas, more baby boomers are riding bicycles, according to the latest National Highway Traffic Safety Administration statistics. Unfortunately, this aging trend can also be found in NHTSA's latest fatality statistics. For the tenth straight year, the average age of persons killed on bicycles has increased. Research shows that in 1997 the average age of a person killed in a bicycle crash was 31; in 2007 it increased to more than 40.

"Our roads and communities must be built to allow people to get around safely outside of their cars, on bike or on foot," LaHood said. "These statistics show that our transportation program needs to have a much greater focus on making our roadways safe for bicyclists."

Since 1992, the department's Federal Highway Administration has provided more than $4.5 billion in federal aid for bicycle and pedestrian safety programs. States have used Federal-aid funds to construct shared use paths for bicyclists and pedestrians, and to provide bicycle lanes, bicycle parking, and other highway safety features to reduce fatalities and to increase bicycle use. FHWA also actively promotes bicycle safety through Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center and the National Center for Safe Routes to School. These efforts balance FHWA's commitment to easing traffic congestion with keeping roads safe for all users.

"The most important thing bicyclists and motorists need to remember is that they both share the road equally," said Ron Medford, NHTSA's acting deputy administrator.

Recent data shows that the 698 bicyclist deaths in 2007 accounted for two percent of all traffic fatalities, with an additional 44,000 injured in traffic crashes.

To avoid the risk of becoming a fatality, motorists and cyclists are urged by the department to take extra precaution when driving and riding. Motorists should:

  • Recognize that bicyclists have a right to ride on the roadway;
  • Always stay alert;
  • Make a visual check for bicyclists by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or leaving a lane of traffic.

Cyclists should:

  • Ride on the roadway or shared pathways, rather than on sidewalks;
  • Follow the same rules of the road as other roadway users, including riding in the same direction as traffic and following all the same traffic signs and signals;
  • Wear a bicycle helmet every time you ride;
  • Make yourself visible by wearing bright colors during the day, reflective gear (clothing, arm or leg bands, etc.) in low light conditions, and use head and tail lights at night.

To review NHTSA's latest bicyclist and other cyclist traffic safety facts, click here.

Download Center

  • Industrial Premium Library

    Empower your workforce with the manufacturing, industrial maintenance, operations, HSE, compliance, and professional development skills they need to complete their tasks efficiently and safely. Not only will you boost productivity, reliability, skills, and morale but you’ll also onboard faster, and retain your best employees while meeting regulatory standards. Vector Solutions offers over 1,800 award-winning eLearning courses designed to keep your employees safe, transfer knowledge of fundamentals, and develop industry and job-specific skills that reduce downtime, maintenance costs and more.

  • Safety Metrics & Insights Webinar

    EHS professionals have been tackling the subject of how to best measure performance for many years. Lagging indicators like the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) and Days Away Restricted Transfer Rate (DART) are a good place to start, but you shouldn’t forget about the leading indicators that your workforce does every day to prevent incidents from occurring. Learn about some of the most common KPIs of safety programs and how Vector EHS Management software can be used to track these metrics in this webinar.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively. Download this guide for details on risk matrix calculations including severity, probability, and risk assessment.

  • OSHA Recordkeeping Guide

    In case you missed it, OSHA recently initiated an enforcement program to identify employers who fail to electronically submit Form 300A recordkeeping data to the agency. When it comes to OSHA recordkeeping, there are always questions regarding the requirements and ins and outs. This guide is here to help! We’ll explain reporting, recording, and online reporting requirements in detail.

  • Safety Metrics Guide

    Is your company leveraging its safety data and analytics to maintain a safe workplace? With so much data available, where do you start? This downloadable guide will give you insight on helpful key performance indicators (KPIs) you should track for your safety program

  • Vector Solutions

Featured Whitepaper

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - September 2022

    September 2022

    Featuring:

    • ESG
      EHS Will Guide Future ESG Success for Many Organizations
    • MACHINE GUARDING
      Handling Material Handlers: Training Beyond PIT Requirements
    • EHS SOFTWARE
      The Missing Link with EHS Software
    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Noise Surveys from the Trenches
    View This Issue