NHTSA: Cyclist fatalities from motor vehicle crashes declined 8% last year (don’t celebrate yet)

By Steve Frothingham

WASHINGTON (BRAIN) — The latest figures from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration show a 8.1 percent decline in cyclist deaths due to motor vehicle-related incidents last year, compared to the prior year.

Experts in the bike community point out that the findings, while welcome, don’t indicate a trend.

“The 8 percent reduction in U.S. bike fatalities from 2016 to 2017 corresponds to a five-percent reduction in the fatality rate (per 10,000 bike commuters),” said Jennifer Boldry, the director of research for PeopleForBikes. Boldry determined the fatality rate using one of the few long-term measures of bicycle use available, the U.S. Census’ American Community Survey. The ACS asks a sample of Americans how they got to work in the prior week.
Boldry said the latest NHTSA numbers have to be viewed in the context of long term trends.
“This finding is certainly preferable to another increase but it shouldn’t be interpreted as a trend. Over the last five years, there is an average annual increase in U.S. bike deaths of two percent. The key take-away is that we have a lot of work to do to make it safer and make people feel safer when they ride …read more

Via:: Bicycle Retailer and Industry News