Thursday, 28 August 2014

Obedience and Blame

The number of official contributory factors present in car-bike collisions are similar for cyclists and drivers.
Some factors are arguably bigger than others - I don't know if they were weighted.
The full report runs to 60 pages.
Slightly more contributory factors for cyclists, but I would guess it's not statistically significant.
Since the motorist is (almost?) never the fatality, that may introduce some bias. It would be interesting to exclude cases where the cyclist was unable to give a statement before dying.

Of course, risking your own life is not at all the same thing as risking anothers' !

The top factor was 'failed to look properly' for both sides, in about 30% of cases.

Clear law-breaking accounted for only 5%, 5%, 12%, 4% of cases.
I don't understand why the other causes don't count as 'careless or reckless'!
Sadly, cyclists under 15 years old are a large proportion of the statistics.
I guess all causes are breaches of the Highway Code.
That suggests it is a better target for campaigning, rather than obedience to the Law.

From Cycling safety - a special report - Health News - NHS Choices.htm
Related CTC Forum discussion

To understand the contributory causes to fatal cycle accidents, the Transport Research Laboratory has analysed data from 2005 to 2007.
For cyclists, the most common factors associated with fatal collisions were:
  • Failure to look properly – 31%
  • Cyclists entering road from the pavement – 17% (children are particularly prone to these types of incidents)
  • Loss of control – 17%
  • Failure to judge other person’s path or speed – 15%
  • Poor turning or manoeuvring – 11%
  • Cyclist wearing dark clothes at night – 10%
  • Not displaying lights at night or in poor visibility – 5%
  • Disobeying road signs and markings – 5%
In motorists (both cars and goods vehicles) most common contributing factors associated with fatal collisions with cyclists were:
  • Failure to look properly – 44%
  • Passing too close to cyclist – 19%
  • Careless or reckless driving – 12%
  • Poor turning or manoeuvring – 11%
  • Failure to judge other person’s path or speed – 11%
  • Disobeying road signs and markings – 4%
On average, there were 1.82 contributory factors associated with cyclists involved in a fatal collision and 1.60 contributory factors for drivers.
See also
1) a study based on 'solely to blame', not counting contributory factors.
(Although it seems to come from the same data, if not actually the same TRL report ! )
Risky cycling rarely to blame for bike accidents, study finds - Peter Walker, theguardian.com
Cyclists disobeying stop signal or wearing dark clothing at night rarely cited in collisions causing serious injury
With adult cyclists, police found the driver solely responsible in about 60%-75% of all cases, and riders solely at fault 17%-25% of the time.
2) Exploring Responsibility For Cycle Crashes – An Objective Approach - [ Road Safety Analysis ]
While there is no single simple explanation for why crashes involving pedal cycles occur, the evidence provides clear signposts which point the way for both future debate and ultimate action.
  • most crashes result from human error: environmental changes alone cannot achieve dramatic casualty reductions, as changes in attitude and behaviour will also be required
  • driver behaviour causes cyclist injury more often than cyclist behaviour does: the ‘urban myth’ implying that cyclist behaviour is the main cause of cyclist injury does not stand up to scrutiny
  • cyclists are not simply victims of driver behaviour or environmental difficulties: a large minority of crashes involving cyclist injury involve cyclist behaviour in whole or part
  • collision with goods vehicles poses a higher risk of serious cyclist injury than collision with cars: van driver behaviour contributes more often than for other drivers, while factors contributing to crashes with lorries are more nuanced
3) Data available here !

4) Who's to blame in crashes between cyclists and motorists? - [ CTC ]
Risky cycling rarely to blame for bike accidents, study finds - [ The Guardian ]

5) 16% of accidents are hit-and-run
Almost 900 cyclist victims of hit-and-runs in London 2013 - [ road.cc ]

6) Cyclists jump red lights in 5% of KSIs : drivers 17%

TfL Cycle Safety Action Plan doesn't contain this chart ! March 2015
I found this in Jenny Jones' London’s Lawless Roads Dec 2013

DOE runs cyclists’ safety campaign - [ Road Safety GB ]
has some alarming comments (from otherwise experts)
"It takes two to tangle."
No collision can ever be the fault of just one of the parties involved as both of them have to be in error for a collision to occur. A driver may make a precipitating error, but the cyclist/motorcyclist must also make the completing error that finishes the job. If a cyclist gets hit then they have either put themselves in a position where they can be hit or they have failed to predict an unfolding situation correctly. Duncan MacKillop, Stratford on Avon
Any road use puts you in a position where you can be hit !
If someone rams you from behind, there is little you can do about it, even if you are aware.
He forgets entirely that the cyclist has limited ability to 'accelerate out of trouble' therein lies our vulnerability. Victim-blaming is not the answer.
Trio set out to develop ‘New View’ of road safety - [ Road Safety GB ]
Background & Aims - [ No Surprise – No Accident ]

So Who Is The "Good Guy" Really? - [ Diary Of An ADI ]
"society is gradually waking up the the real problem of too many cyclists using dangerous roads in dangerous ways" ... "by doing so they put themselves in danger"
 "the duty of care incumbent on the cyclist to keep out of the way wherever possible"
Some say the Netherlands is better because of better driving standards - here they use a bus-lane and Health Centre car-park with kerbs !




See also
Laws: Who’s Breaking What - [ Beyond the Kerb ]
Cyclists' Behaviour and the Law - [ CTC Campaigns Briefing ]
Ban cyclists from the road and build more cycle paths - [ e-petitions ]
Don’t Shoot the Messenger - [ Beyond the Kerb ]
Dacota Report from CARE data - [ European Road Safety Observatory ]
Road collisions - [ Department for Transport ] - local data by region
Strategic Framework for Road Safety outcome indicators, Great Britain - shows cycling KSIs are the only ones getting worse !
cyclist casualties climb 10 per cent - [ road.cc ]
Minicab chief: cyclists have to expect to be hurt on roads - [ The Times ]
5 Reasons We Will Always Blame the Victim - [ Cracked.com ]
Is dangerous cycling a problem? - [BBC News Magazine ]
Every cycling collision in London mapped - [ City A.M. ]
Transport for London’s “Cycle Safety Action Plan”: Still getting it wrong. - [ Road Danger Reduction Forum ]
Road collisions England 2005-2013 – Department for Transport - lots of useful links
Latest Road Casualty Figures Continue to Disappoint - [ Road Safety Analysis - MAST ]
Cyclists are to blame for road deaths: TfL board member - [ politics.co.uk - Environment ]
Isn’t it time to end the Taliban approach to road safety? - [ the ubiquitous blog ]
Fine for doctor who killed an obese woman - [ STVNews ] - Scots Law !
Cyclists 'almost as likely' to injure pedestrians as cars - [ The Week UK ]
Motorists and cyclists create army of walking wounded - [ The Times ]
Motorists warned about illegal left turn - [ Gateshead Council ]
More than 30,000 road accidents a year caused by drivers ‘failing to look properly’ - [ Institute of Advanced Motorists ]
Bicycling campaigns promoting health versus campaigns promoting safety: A randomized controlled online study of ‘dangerization - [ Science Direct ]
What Happened When Bicyclists Obeyed Traffic Laws - [ Price Tags ]
Reported Road Casualties inGreat Britain: Main Results 2014 - [ gov.uk ]
Article 4. Contributory factors to reported road accidents - [ Transport Scotland ]
"The causative potency of the motor vehicle is highly significant in assessing apportionment."
Taking a chance - [ New Law Journal ]
The background context of tort case law on safety belts and motorcycle helmets - [ Cyclists’ Defence Fund ]
Cycle Helmets: A Duty to Wear? - [ Cyclists’ Defence Fund ]
HELMETS - HELPFUL OR HOPELESS? NEGLIGENT OR NOT? - [ PIBA 10TH APRIL 2005 ]
More than 40 cyclists fined in Manchester crackdown – but police find motorists are committing double the offences - [ road.cc ]
These Statistics Should Be a Wake-Up Call - [ liveinhope.net ]
You’re to blame for road accidents too, government tells cyclists - [ driving.co.uk - Sunday Times Driving ]
The red-light fight: who's to blame for the spate of cyclist deaths on London's roads? - [ London Evening Standard ]
Drop in driver mobile phone prosecutions but poll suggest an increase - [ keep me on the road ]
Boris's big brain - [ cabbieblog.com ]
Police clampdown on red light jumping cyclists - [ City Cyclists ]
" City of London Police statistics for the last three years found 66 per cent of pedestrians injured in incidents with vehicles were to blame for their own injuries and just 3 per cent were cyclists found to be at fault."

  • Dr Heinz Kiosk — A psychoanalyst and rentaquote pundit who, at every manifestation of anti-social behavior, is ready to deflect responsibility from the individual perpetrator and onto society as a whole; as reflected in his catchphrase "We are all guilty!"[3]
Exploring Responsibility For Cycle Crashes – An Objective Approach - [ Road Safety Analysis (MAST) ]
Drivers who cycle are more likely to support bike infra - [ Bikehub ]
How many people are killed by road crime? - [ RoadPeace ]
Cyclists: Go Truck Yourselves - [ Beyond the Kerb ]
Is cycling getting more or less dangerous? - [ BBC News ]
Road Casualties Great Britain - [ Travel Independent ]
Charts - [ Department for Transport ]
News and guides - So, who are Britain's safest drivers? - [ Aviva ] - none statististically significant ?
Drivers are completely baffled by basic road-signs, Highway Code quiz reveals - [ Western Daily Press ]
Crashes involving bikes mostly driver’s fault - [ The Times ]
"@standardnews What an excellent idea - safer for everyone. I'm a cyclist - but the Velofascism in London has become ridiculous" - [ John Morris on Twitter ]

Good road design is not conditional on the good behaviour of users - [ As Easy As Riding A Bike ]
Traffic police ordered to fine 10 cyclists a month - [ BikeRadar ]
Child Road Safety in GB - [ racfoundation.org ]