Separated bike lanes mean safer streets for everyone… Not just those on bikes.
With a protected bike lanes reducing the risk of bike injuries by 90% we know that protected bike lanes keep bicyclist much safer, but did you know that it keeps everyone safer, including people traveling by car or on foot.
A recent study from the University of Colorado Denver and the University of New Mexico found that cities with protected bike lanes had 44% fewer deaths than the average city. “Protected separated bike facilities was one of our biggest factors associated with lower fatalities and lower injuries for all road users,” study co-author Wesley Marshall.
The study looked at 12 major cities beteween 2000-2012. The team of researchers analyzed 17,000 fatalities and 77,000 severe injuries in cities including Denver, Portland, Dallas, Seattle, San Francisco, Kansas City and Chicago, all had experienced an increase in cycling as they built more infrastructure. Researchers found that bike infrastructure, particularly physical barriers that separate bikes from speeding cars as opposed to shared or painted lanes, significantly lowered fatalities in cities that installed them. Perhaps even more important: Researchers found that painted bike lanes provided no improvement on road safety. And their review earlier this year of shared roadways — where bike symbols are painted in the middle of a lane — revealed that it was actually safer to have no bike markings at all.
“I guess our hypotheses was maybe safety in numbers,” Marshall said. “Like, you’ve got a lot more cyclists on the road, drivers behave differently. There might be some sort of traffic calming in themselves, in terms of slowing.”
Here at Impact Recovery Systems we have always believed that separated bike lanes are best for safety, and since 1991 we have sold high quality fully impactable traffic products. Check out our full line of Bike Lane Protection or the new OmegaPost delineator which is the most durable traffic post on the market.